As we say goodbye to March, Jim and Gill have been delighted to be back out and about meeting with PPGs and practices, and this looks set to continue into April with many things already in our diaries. Please do continue to let us know what your PPG plans are and if you’d like our advice and support.

Jim attended several PPG meetings in March including one at Shelley Manor and Holdenhurst practice in Bournemouth where the group have agreed to change their name to the Friends of the practice to better reflect the projects the group has planned for the future!

Gill hosted the regular Cross Primary Care Network PPG representatives meeting, which gave people the opportunity to network, share information and take part in lively discussions! She also attended PPG meetings in Bere Regis and Ferndown as well as an extremely well-attended PPG relaunch in Broadstone.

A photograph of people at a prediabetes session

The Bridges PPG in Weymouth hosted 2 pre-diabetes sessions at the practice with diabetic dietitian Isi Hooley, where people were invited to ask questions to help them better understand the condition. The PPG are also looking to hold similar sessions in the future for other medical conditions.

Jim and Gill were delighted to be invited to meet with NHS Public Engagement officers from north east London, who were interested in hearing about the valuable work being done by Dorset’s PPGs.

Jim and Gill also attended a Digital Care Coordinators meeting in March, which was really good to learn how they can support patients to access digital healthcare tools and apps and how keen they are to be involved with PPGs. The Digital Care Coordinators are not currently in every Primary Care Network (PCN), if you would like to know if you have someone in your local area please get in touch!

At the end of March Gill went along to the regular Socially Connecting Shaftesbury sessions held at the town hall on the last Wednesday of every month. It was another great session with lots of different organisations available to help and offer advice.

The 100 Conversations project went into overdrive in March, a massive thank you to everyone who either took part or shared information with friends or family.

Outside of work Gill visited Egypt for some much-needed winter sun, although she did manage to bring a chest infection back with her, forcing her to send apologies to a couple of meetings. Thankfully she is now fully recovered! Jim took a short break to Belfast where he visited the Titanic attraction, Giants Causeway and made the most of the Irish hospitality! Also, after buying an electronic piano during the first lockdown, he finally started taking lessons!

A selfie of Jim and Kelly at Giant's Causeway

April is upon us and as always we are keen to help practices and PPGs build their PPGs – we can come and meet you face to face or can meet via Microsoft Teams or Zoom if this is better for your diaries.

Wishing all our groups and practices a very Happy Easter!