Stanford-Le-Hope & District


Advice from NHS ENGLAND.

"JUST" the Flu

“Just” the flu? Each year the flu kills on average 11,000 people and hospitalises thousands more. There’s no just about it. The flu virus spreads from person to person. Even amongst those not showing symptoms. The flu vaccine is the best protection for you and those around you. It’s available for free to those most at risk. Ask your GP or pharmacist.
This year, with COVID-19 in circulation, it’s more important than ever that eligible groups are vaccinated to protect them from flu.

Flu can affect people differently; even if you are healthy and think you can cope with it, you may pass it onto someone close to you who may be at a greater risk of complications due to medical conditions such as heart disease or diabetes etc. The best way to reduce your risk of getting sick with seasonal flu and passing it to other people is to have the flu vaccination, which is free to many.

If you are unsure of your eligibility for the free NHS flu vaccine, contact your GP or pharmacy.
The more people who have the vaccination this winter, the less the flu virus can spread,
helping to protect yourself and those vulnerable children and adults within our community.

Click on the poster to see the advice.

Flu poster

Also available is advice from the NHS. Click Stay Well This Winter


Hearing Aids

Due to COVID-19, all appointments and the Walk-in Repair sessions in both Orsett & Basildon hospitals, and Billericay Health Centre are cancelled for the foreseeable future. With Libraries closed, replacement batteries for aids may be difficult to obtain.

To assist their patients, the hospital are providing a postal hearing aid repair service and posting hearing aid batteries.
At present, any patient who require batteries can telephone Orsett Audiology on 01268 394 732. They will take the persons details and post out the required batteries. If any aids are broken, or need repairing, the individual can post the aids off to Orsett Audiology and they will attempt to fix the aids and post back once completed. They can also supply the tubing.

For more information, and if you require advice about your aid, please contact by email Orsett Audiology or telephone 01268 394 732

Read My Lips
Many people with hearing loss rely on lip reading to make sense of what people are saying. It's not easy! Lip patterns like the sounds P, B, M all look the same on someone's lips. Try saying those sounds in a mirror and you'll understand. Here are some tips on helping someone with hearing loss, who relies on lip reading, to communicate better.

Face the person when speaking: Not only are they reading your lips, they are looking at your expression too.
Speak normally: No need to shout, or exaggerate word shapes - it just makes you look angry!
Stand in good light: It helps the person to see your face clearly. Don't stand with your back to a window, or in a room with the lights lowered.
Don't cover your mouth when speaking: No one can read lips if they can't see them!

Most importantly, be patient. The person with hearing loss is working twice as hard as you are to be included and keep the conversation going.

(Diane Wallace and Jenny Radford are attending a free Lip Reading Course in Thurrock Adult Community College, Grays. If you'd like to attend one of these courses contact TACCollege for more information).

Also click here for the latest brochure Lip Reading Brochure and how to enquire.


Public Health England have asked us to inform our members of the following:-

There is a vaccine that helps reduce your risk of getting shingles and reduces the severity of symptoms if you develop the disease.

Shingles Elegibility Click the poster on the left to read the original advice as supplied.

People aged 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 78 and 79 years are eligible for the shingles vaccination.

Shingles can be very painful and may sometimes lead to complications, such as postherpetic neuralgia. This severe nerve pain can last for years even after the rash has gone.
Complications like this are more common in older people and those with a weakened immune system.

Please contact your GP surgery to enquire and to book your vaccination.

For more information please see Shingles


Health Watch Essex These links could be useful for anyone who could do with a hand in a difficult health or care situation.
info service explanation.
Information service leaflet



Do you use a hearing aid or are you officially recognised as hard of hearing?

If so are you aware that you might be eligible to buy a Disabled Persons Railcard (which is cheaper than a senior rail card)?

This disabled rail card allows you to get a third off the cost of most rail fares throughout Great Britain, including all Standard and First Class Anytime, Off-Peak and Advance fares across the National Rail network. You also get 1/3 off London Zones 1-6 Off-Peak Day Travelcards and 1/3 off Anytime Day Travelcards, when bought as part of your ticket to London from outside London Zones 1-9. Not only do you get cheaper tickets but if you travel with another person they also get the same reduction.

Minimum fares apply to Anytime Day and Off-Peak Day Travelcards. 1/3 off Oyster pay as you go single fares and daily caps (available to the Railcard holder only.)

The proof of your hearing loss which is required is a copy of the front page of your NHS battery book, or a copy of your dispensing prescription or other evidence that you are deaf/use a hearing aid from an official health provider or local authority. You can apply on line (if you are able to send scanned evidence) or by post using the Disabled Person Railcard forms found at railway stations. (They have a green border compared to the blue ones for Senior Railcards.) These forms also provide you with more information than is mentioned here as does disabled persons railcard

This information is not publicised at hearing aid clinics and a lot of people who are hard of hearing who I have spoken to are not aware of it. I wish to thank Jean Baker who mentioned it an interest group meeting.

The Disabled Persons Railcard is obviously also for people with other disabilities including various types of epilepsy – if you think it might apply to a disability you have, check it out.
Diane Wallace