Better Care Together at the Westmorland County Show

With five NHS organisations, including Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, as well as Radio Lonsdale, Morecambe Bay Hospitals Charity and Kendal Organ Donor Town attending, this year was the largest marquee the NHS has ever had at the Westmorland County Show.

The marquee was busy throughout the day with an estimated 500-1000 visitors attending the various stands – enabling them to be updated about the latest on the current status of the Better Care Together strategy.

Members of the public, initially drawn in by delicious flapjacks and shortbread courtesy of the catering departments from our local hospitals, were invited to discuss a range of health issues and engage in a number of activities.

‘Pandamedic’ the NWAS mascot helping to bring visitors to our marquee

Colleagues from North West Ambulance Service (NWAS), with mascot ‘Pandamedic’, were on hand to provide some basic first aid advice and training, as well as a tour of an ambulance.

Cumbria Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CPFT) encouraged show attendees to be part of a joint membership application scheme. This meant anyone who wished to become a member of NWAS, CPFT and University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust (UHMB) could do so and would only need to provide their details once. CPFT also held a drawing competition for children to help design a welcome pack for the Children and Families Care Group, all entries were great and the team is currently deciding the winner, who will receive a £20 Amazon gift card.

NHS Lancashire North CCG helped provide health MOTs for the public & a variety of departments from UHMB offered advice and help to people attending the stands.

Colleagues from across the organisations were on hand to give advice on healthy living, including infection prevention, healthy eating & diabetes, alcohol awareness and provide Body Mass Index and blood pressure readings.

Members of the Radio Lonsdale team, who provide the patient radio, based at Westmorland General Hospital

The Westmorland County Agricultural Society was established in 1799 and hosts the annual Westmorland County Show, near Crooklands Kendal. The show, which takes place on the second Thursday of September, hosts several hundred stands and approximately 30,000 visitors each year. This year was the highest ever attendance with more than 35,000 people attending.

The show regularly draws visits from local schools and the children enjoyed a number of the activities on offer, including decorating cupcakes, ‘spot the fracture’ X-Ray game and a ‘name the teddy’ competition.

Colleagues from Women’s and Children’s, Mental Health, Dementia care and Respiratory services were also on hand to give more specific advice; with a particular highlight being a “pregnancy suit” (wearing this shows how it feels to be around 32 weeks pregnant) which proved popular, especially with male visitors!

UHMB Deputy Chief Nurse Lynne Wyre said “it was a fantastic day, both to engage with the public and network with other health professionals.”