Winter is a time of year when our health and care services come under increased pressure – and demand at our county’s accident and emergency departments is particularly high during the colder months.

This year communications teams from across Northamptonshire’s health and care organisations have come together to plan and deliver a co-ordinated campaign aimed at reducing this pressure and supporting our colleagues on the front line. Running from November to March, the campaign uses a variety of methods to raise awareness of the full range of local NHS services and the help that’s available to manage winter illness, including:

  • A major awareness campaign inside and outside our acute hospitals (see article below for details)
  • Social media campaigns and messaging to support self care and choosing the right service – including the ‘24 days of staying well’ advent calendar
  • Promotion of GP Extended Access and NHS 111 to service user groups – including fridge magnets for community nursing teams to leave with patients
  • Letters with promotional materials for GP Extended Access and NHS 111 sent to the county’s 100 largest businesses
  • Winter communications toolkits for GP practices
  • Promotion of free flu vaccination to staff groups and public using Ned’s Story. As of December 2019, Northamptonshire had the highest percentage uptake of staff flu vaccinations in the entire Midlands region
  • Awareness campaign for NHFT’s Changing Minds IAPT service during the Christmas period (below right)
  • Winter health and wellbeing roadshows around the county

Further details of one of the most high-profile elements of the NHCP winter communications campaign are detailed below. For further information email nhcp.communications@nhs.net.