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Long Term Conditions

Long term conditions are health problems that do not go away. This can be anything from arthritis to high blood pressure, diabetes or COPD. Long term conditions are managed through lifestyle measures and medication. We manage long term conditions with you, through shared decision making, to help you live life to the full.

This section is here to help you understand what living with a long-term condition entails, how you can manage it, and the support that is available to you. 

Lifelong Diagnosis

Being diagnosed with a lifelong condition can be daunting. 15 million of us in the UK live with long term conditions every day from every walk of life; young, old and from every background. It’s important to get your head around the facts and understand what your condition is and what you can do to help manage it. 

Speaking to your GP when you are diagnosed is important thought it might not be enough time. Don’t feel that this is a one-off appointment. Our team can take you through what living with a long-term condition might entail and signpost you to the best care. Our door is open to answer questions, to review and to support you.

Visit the patient info guide on living with long term conditions.

Empowering You

Patient empowerment is the process that helps people gain control over their own lives and increases their capacity to act on issues that they themselves define as important. Self-care is the best care. Empowered patients having better health outcomes, use less medication and have fewer appointments.

Watch this short video from the NHS about the importance of self-care.

Empowerment involves:

  • Knowledge – understanding what your health condition is, how it changes and the management
  • Confidence – having the confidence to manage you condition, live life and access help when you need it
  • Self-efficacy – understanding how you long term condition affects you, having the support networks you need and using resources available

For more information about empowerment, speak to your GP/nurse or visit http://www.powerforpatient.org/ 

Keeping Healthy

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle will have the biggest impact in helping you manage your long-term condition. Making positive lifestyle changes will not only help manage your long-term condition, it improves your physical and mental wellbeing. 

The impact of many health conditions can be reduced, slowed or even reversed with positive lifestyle changes. 

Visit our lifestyle changes webpage for more information.

Health Trainers can help you to take the steps needed to live a healthier life. Ring 01670 623840 to self-refer to the health trainer service.

Year of Care – talk about what matters to you

At Marine Medical Group, we use the ‘Year of Care’ approach in managing long term conditions. Year of Care aims to give you the best care and support through empowerment and collaboration. This involves giving you information to allow you to prepare for your consultation and make the best plan going forward.

Currently, Year of Care is used for annual reviews of diabetes and COPD. However, we encourage patients to use this approach for all consultations. Our team is happy to help you engage in the process, providing you information before your consultation in order to get the most out of it. 

Speak to your GP, our practice nurses or reception team for more information.

Make Every Contact Count

At the practice, we strive to make every appointment as useful for you and us as possible. Being an empowered patient also allows you to make every encounter with a health professional as effective and beneficial as possible. 

Understanding your long-term condition and how it affects you means you can access care when you need it most and when it will give you the most benefit. This also means knowing which healthcare professional to seek help from whether that be your GP, practice nurse, social prescriber, pharmacist, physio or many more.

If you’re unsure when you might need to see a healthcare professional or who to see, speak to one of our team or visit the section on our website.

12-month Review (Birthday month)

We review many conditions on a yearly basis at the surgery. This is to monitor how you are managing with your condition and how we can help improve things. Conditions we review include:

  • Diabetes
  • Asthma
  • Heart disease
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Kidney disease
  • Dementia
  • Severe mental health conditions

We also help hospital services monitor your conditions if you are on a disease modifying drug

You should receive an appointment with one of our practice nurses for a review around your birthday. If you’re expecting a review and do not hear from us, please contact reception. 

Help and Support

A great place to start is by asking our team. Our Receptionists, Nursing team and Social Prescribers would be very happy to ensure you are getting the best support. 

There are many groups and organisations that can give you help and support in living with a long-term condition and also the financial challenges that this may cause.

 Local groups

  • Age UK Northumberland – 01670 784800
  • Briardale House – 01670 359135
  • Alzheimer’s Society Blyth – 01670 813255
  • Blyth Health Trainer Service – 01670 623840
  • Bridge Project Northumberland – 01670 858688

Some services may be affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Contact our social prescribers for further groups and more information.

Organistations that provide information and support for a wide range of conditions and carers. Your condition may not be covered by this list but that doesn’t mean there isn’t support out there. Search for a foundation or as in the surgery for help.

Health and Care Videos

Diabetes

Arthritis, Gout and Rheumatology

  • https://www.versusarthritis.org/ – support and research for arthritis, gout and rheumatological disease
  • https://healthandcarevideos.uk/bones – video resources 

Heart, Blood and Circulation

Asthma

National Kidney Foundation

Age UK

Digestive Health

Neurology

COPD

British Lung Foundation

  • https://www.blf.org.uk/ – support for lung problems from asthma to COPD
  • https://healthandcarevideos.uk/breathing – video resources

Stroke

Learning Disability

  • https://www.mencap.org.uk/ – support for people with people with learning disabilities, their families and carers
  • https://www.scope.org.uk/ – practical information and practical support for people with learning disabilities
  • https://healthandcarevideos.uk/ld – video resources

Dementia

British Liver Trust