nene local | helen dawson


Archive for: September 2013


A private hospital in Northampton is supporting a national campaign to raise awareness of the UK’s top five preventable killers.

BMI Three Shires Hospital in Northampton is encouraging people to make an online pledge to help improve their health.

BMI Three Shires Hospital in Northampton is encouraging people to make an online pledge to help improve their health.

The Big Health Pledge is a nationwide campaign encouraging people across the country to look at their lifestyle choices, good and bad, and take a simple health pledge to allow them to see a change in their health.

Earlier this year it was revealed that the UK has slipped down the European health league on many indicators for ill-health. The Big Health Pledge is focused on the UK’s top five causes of preventable deaths – heart disease, stroke, cancer, lung disease and liver disease.

Each account for more than 150,000 deaths among under-75s in England and the Department of Health estimates that 30,000 of these are entirely avoidable .

Dominic Bath

In area covered by Northamptonshire County Council between 2009 -2011 there were 272 premature deaths, ranking it 72 out of 150 local authorities in England. Wokingham in Berkshire is number one with fewest premature deaths (200) while Manchester is at 150 with 455.

Supporting the Big Health Pledge campaign, consultants, nurses and the team at BMI Three Shires are encouraging people in the region to go online and complete a health survey to identify what health pledge they could make to see long term benefits to their health.

The campaign’s five pledges are:
• Improve Diet
• Move More
• Quit Smoking
• Drink Less Alcohol
• Be Health Aware

The intention for each pledge is to give people easy to follow, manageable steps that will help them on the road to a healthier lifestyle.

Dominic Bath, Executive Director at the hospital said: “All too often we can forget the simple advice given to us that can help benefit our lives.

“But the Big Health Pledge will hopefully get people thinking about how they could eat healthier, be more active, quit smoking, drink less alcohol and be more health aware – all steps to a healthier, happier life.”

For more information visit:

Raising money for Alzheimer’s has certainly been eventful

With a little help from his team and a very generous client, Mark Darnell who owns Home Instead Senior Care in Higham Ferrers has just raised £500 for his local Alzheimer’s Society, through a variety of local fundraising activities.Lauren Keen hands over the cheques to Shahera Bibi from the Alzheimer's Society

The team at Home Instead have organised a number of initiatives over the last few months including; taking up a stall at Higham Ferrers’ local market, organising a car boot sale in Irthlinborough, attending Rushden’s party in the park event and hosting an open day at their office.

Mark added, “As we specialise in providing care to older people in their own homes, we’re all too aware of the difficulties facing someone affected by dementia. The Alzheimer’s Society is a charity which is extremely close to our hearts and that’s why we were keen to really get behind them in order to raise as much money as possible for the fantastic support services they offer to older people in and around East Northants.

“Everyone has worked tirelessly to fundraise over the last few months, in particular our Recruitment Coordinator, Lauren Keen. We’ve all had great fun in the process and I’m very pleased with the amount of money we’ve raised.”

Lauren presented the £500 cheque to Shahera Bibi, manager of Northampton Alzheimer’s Society, who thanked Home Instead for all their hard work and support.

For further information about the services provided by Home Instead Senior Care East Northants please call 01933 358708 or visit

Specialist equipment sheds light on skin cancer treatment

State-of-the-art technology donated to a leading hospital’s dermatology unit will allow skin cancer patients to be treated in a fraction of the normal time, saving the NHS money and cutting waiting lists.

Leicestershire-based Spirit Healthcare to the dermatology unit at Northampton General Hospital

Ground-breaking research into the use of photodynamic therapy in the treatment of skin cancer has prompted a national charity to donate £12,000 of specialist equipment supplied by Leicestershire-based Spirit Healthcare to the dermatology unit at Northampton General Hospital.

Spirit’s £12,000 BF-Rhodo LED PDT treatment lamp, together has been donated to NGH by Weedon-based PDT for Cancer Cure.

The charity was established in 2011 with the aim of promoting the use of PDT in skin cancer treatment and to fundraise to equip every major hospital to be able to provide a local service for patients.

Trustee Bill Loryman said: “The biggest challenge with skin cancer is that it’s invasive surgery, you have to have bits cut out, which can leave big scars and it still may not work.

“Photo-dynamic therapy has the ability to get rid of the non-melanoma skin cancer just as effectively, but without the scarring. You go into the clinic in the morning, have the treatment and go home again. Rather than having it cut out you just sit under a lamp for 10 minutes, it’s much easier.”

The equipment will be based at NGH and will be available to dermatology patients from across the county, as well as referrals from other local trusts such as Bedford and Milton Keynes.

Spirit Healthcare’s Angelina Thorne added: “The beauty of the treatment is that it’s effective and by setting up more PDT services across the country, more people are able to get treated quickly. We are keen to focus on patient quality of life while providing value to the NHS. This equipment reduces waiting times for surgery, meaning everyone benefits.”

The static lamp has much greater control to tailor treatment to individual patients. Nurses can vary the strength of the light therapy which is particularly useful when treating sensitive areas of the body, making it less painful.

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Confectionary brands putting profit before animal welfare says animal charity

FOUR PAWS urges consumers to buy confectionery brands already using cage
free eggs

FOUR PAWS is urging shoppers to check labels carefully when buying
cakes, biscuits and other confectionery to make sure any eggs used are from
birds who haven’t been confined in a cage.

Some brands on sale in British supermarkets already use cage free eggs such
as Mr Kipling cakes as do all own-brand cakes at Sainsbury’s, the
Co-operative, Waitrose and M&S.


Many other brands, including Lyons cakes and Nestle cakes have yet to make
the pledge to move to using only cage free eggs.

Egg laying hens are one of the few types of farm animal in the UK that, on
some farms, are still kept in close-confinement cage systems for all of
their productive lives. FOUR PAWS is concerned that hens can’t carry out all
of their important natural behaviours properly in such an environment. All
laying hens should be kept in well-managed free-range or barn systems to
enable them to perform all their natural behaviours.

Cupcake from images@stock.xchng

Courtesy of images@stock.xchng

Angelique Davies, spokesperson for FOUR PAWS, says: “FOUR PAWS is
celebrating the growing choice for consumers wishing to indulge in cake
without contributing to the suffering of the millions of hens who are still
kept in battery cages. Around half of hens in the UK are still housed in
cages. If it doesn’t specify on the ingredient list that the eggs are
free-range or barn, you can assume they are likely to have come from cages.

“We’re really making headway on this issue, with growing numbers of
retailers and manufacturers pledging to use only cage-free eggs, there’s
plenty of choice for consumers to shop ethically.”

FOUR PAWS is also campaigning for the egg labelling laws to be extended to
include egg ingredient in products like cake so that companies using cage
eggs will have to make that clear on the label. A poll commissioned by FOUR
PAWS showed 69% of consumers think that all food products containing eggs
should be labelled to indicate the production system that the eggs came