We’re still open and here to help you!

Following the Prime Minister’s lockdown announcement, OneLife Suffolk are open and accepting referrals we have also adapted the way we deliver our services to continue to help you to live healthier lives, particularly in these challenging times.

We will continue to deliver one-to-one face to face appointments and our face to face group sessions with a maximum of up to 15 people.

We are also able to deliver our services remotely by contacting and supporting clients via Telephone, Zoom and Facebook. If these options are unsuitable for you or your family, please contact us and we will look to support you via an alternative method.

If you are currently in the process of attending one of our face to face programmes, you will be contacted by your practitioner in the next few days to discuss your preference on whether you would prefer face to face or remote delivery. It will remain our aim to seamlessly continue to support you to ensure your success.

Our NHS Health Checks will continue to operate as normal and you can book an appointment by signing up on our website, or calling our client services team.

As per the advice from the Ramblers Association, and the government guidance concerning outdoor activities being restricted to people from your own household, support bubble or one other person, our Health Walks have been suspended with immediate effect. We are hoping to restart these as soon as guidance permits.

It is so important to talk, and in these difficult and uncertain times it is more vital than ever that we communicate with our friends, family and those in our communities as effectively as possible, and learn how to support each other.  Sometimes we have to have difficult conversations with our nearest and dearest too and these can be challenging. 

OneLife Suffolk’s Making Every Contact Count (MECC) training provides you with the skills of how to spot the right time to have a meaningful and supportive conversation. It also gives you the knowledge needed to help and support others in making healthier and happier choices in their lives.  Our training is completely FREE and can be completed online when it suits you. It only takes approximately 60 minutes and is an interesting, interactive session with useful skills we can use every day. Go to our online training page to register for FREE and start learning today. 

If you have any further questions or queries, please call us on 01473 718193. Thank you for your cooperation.

The Importance of Self-Care

Self-care has never been as important as during these uncertain times. It isn’t just about taking a bath and lighting candles (although this can help!) Self-care is any activity that we do deliberately to take care of our mental, physical and emotional health.

For helpful tips and suggestions check out the below:

Five Ways to Wellbeing

Wellbeing have provided 5 practical ways to include a self-care habit into your daily routine

Wellbeing

Mind has many tips on how to improve your mental wellbeing. Other contacts are also provided if more support is needed

5 Ways to Wellbeing

Healthy Suffolk is offering lots of ideas on how to support your wellbeing whilst being at home

There’s Only One You

The One You campaign has lots of interactive tools such as apps and quizzes to support your wellbeing

OneLife Suffolk partners with local charity Future Inclusions to offer life changing services

OneLife Suffolk and charity Future Inclusions Organisation have formed a partnership to support people from Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic and underrepresented communities get better support in helping to lose weight, stop smoking and increase physical activity.

Future Inclusions is a charity which promotes and supports Suffolk residents to reach their full potential and works with disadvantaged communities to deliver life-skills based training and learning.

OneLife Suffolk, which is commissioned by Suffolk County Council Public Health helps local people to live healthier lives by providing free services such as Adult Weight Management, Children and families programmes, Stop Smoking support, Get Help to Get Active, Health walks and NHS Health Checks.

(left to right) Felicia Robinson, Future Inclusions Organisation; Julie Hepton, OneLife Suffolk; William Robinson, Future Inclusions Organisation; and Marco Silva, Future Inclusions Organisation (Credit: OneLife Suffolk)

Both organisations have been running a series of joint focus groups in the IP1 – IP4 postcode areas with members of the local community, to better understand cultural and lifestyle preferences. Over 11% of the Ipswich population are Black and Ethnic minority and IP1-IP4 has been identified as a hot spot for Covid-19 cases.

The two organisations will work together to adapt the services in which OneLife Suffolk offer to meet the needs of the community.

Lisa Cox Head of OneLife Suffolk, said: “It is so important to us that we can offer our services to every member of the community and we’re excited to have the opportunity to work with Future Inclusions Organisation.”

“From different diets and ingredients, to a cultural preference of female to female delivery of physical activity programmes, we are already learning a lot from these different communities and have some great ideas on how to make our programmes more diverse – such as multicultural healthy cooking as part of our Adult Weight Management programme.”

During the summer, representatives from OneLife Suffolk volunteered their time to deliver food parcels with Future Inclusions Organisation as part of their Covid-19 Community Project, supporting disadvantaged families in the IP1 area of Ipswich who were affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. They have since supported again on this project delivering ‘Food Blessing Bags’ to the Anglo-Chinese Cultural Exchange (ACCE) who then delivered these to members of the community in need of help and care at Christmas.

OneLife Suffolk have also employed a full time Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Lead to support this partnership and future projects.

Felicia Robinson, from Future Inclusions Organisation, said: “We’re very excited about this partnership as it will help us to grow as an organisation because of the additional resources which will be made available. We will be able to better understand the needs of the people within the IP localities of Ipswich through the focus group sessions and work together to offer use of these fantastic services which will see a positive impact on the local community as a result.”

“Furthermore, it will allow our work as the Future Inclusions Organisation to become more familiar among other organisations and the community.”

Kk Wong and Lydia Tse MBE from ACCE with one of their volunteers, receiving the Food Blessing Bags to give out to members of the community in the IP1 area (Credit: OneLife Suffolk)

The initial project will run for a duration of 12-months, with regular feedback from the communities to focus the programmes to meet their needs. All results will be fed back to Leeds Beckett University so they are also able to establish which elements work and can be replicated across other contracts that MoreLife hold in the UK.

To find out more about OneLife Suffolk, visit https://onelifesuffolk.co.uk/ or visit https://futureinclusions.org/ to learn more about the charity.

Winter Wellbeing Support

For most of us, the festive season will be different and possibly more difficult than usual this year.

Remember you are not alone, and there is plenty of help and resources available. Check out the below for lots of helpful tips and suggestions:

Christmas and Coronavirus

Mind have provided advice on how to cope with difficult feelings, ideas on how to celebrate Christmas this year and suggestions for those spending Christmas alone.

Heads Together

Tips on how to look after your mental health this Christmas, including coping with social anxiety, loneliness and bereavement.

Mental Health Foundation

Celebrating festivals and occasions during the COVID-19 restrictions.

Wellbeing Suffolk

Useful resources and links regarding mental health and emotional issues.

Wellbeing Suffolk

Self help, including advice about mental health, advice for those living with a long term conditions and more.

Amparo Suffolk

Support for those living in Suffolk who have been affected by suicide.

COVID Hub

Emotional wellbeing, mental health and learning disabilities COVID-19 Information Hub.

Wellbeing Suffolk

Wellbeing Suffolk are hosting a number of online get togethers to try to combat isolation and loneliness.

National recognition for provider of life-changing healthy lifestyle services in East Anglia

We are delighted to announce that MoreLife has been revealed as a finalist for the Health Service Journal (HSJ) awards for our success in helping people living in East Anglia to improve their health and wellbeing. 

Set up in partnership with Leeds Beckett University, MoreLife uses research and insight to develop evidence driven and community led programmes, commissioned by local councils and Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs).

Creating positive outcomes

The ‘Community provider of the year’ entry demonstrated how our services are harnessing the power of local partners and communities to address health inequalities across Suffolk and Essex.

In Suffolk, the ‘OneLife Suffolk’ service has supported over 62,500 residents with healthy lifestyle and behavioural change programmes since 2016, with key programmes focused around child and adult weight management, stop smoking, NHS health checks and ‘get help to get active’  for people with long term health conditions.

In South and West Essex, over 1,700 residents have joined our 12-month weight management programme since 2018, and have been supported in tackling their challenges living with obesity.

Developing community partnerships

Crucial to achieving these positive outcomes, we have worked with over 200 GPs across East Anglia to signpost patients to relevant services, and deliver ‘Make Every Contact Count’ training to over 4,000 community champions including teachers, health care practitioners’, pharmacists, voluntary sector staff and others.

Our innovative partnership with maternity services in Suffolk based hospitals has supported relevant training for over 25 midwives each month – resulting in 132 expectant mums quitting smoking in 2018/19.

Adapting to the Covid-19 pandemic

The entry also showcased how we have adapted our model from face-to-face delivery to virtual delivery supported with digital resources – ensuring continuity of delivery during COVID-19. Over 75,000 wellbeing and service update calls were made to Suffolk residents in need during the lockdown (just under 10% of the Suffolk population).

To support staff wellbeing during the pandemic, we have trained our teams to deliver services from their homes, introduced virtual coffee catch-ups and surveys staff about their wellbeing every six weeks.

Paul Gately, Professor of Exercise and Obesity at Leeds Beckett University and CEO of MoreLife said; “Community delivered services are crucial to tackling key public health issues, and we are pleased to receive recognition nationally and be given the opportunity to demonstrate how our services are creating positive outcomes and helping reduce pressures on our NHS.

“I’m incredibly proud of the MoreLife team, who have worked miraculously to adapt to the challenges of the pandemic and ensure the highest standard in the delivery that we provide our clients, and the outcomes that they achieve.”

The winners of the national HSJ awards will be announced on 17 March 2021.

Campaign warns that around three in five cases of Type 2 diabetes could be prevented or delayed

OneLife Suffolk and Public Health Suffolk have launched a campaign to increase awareness of the Diabetes UK ‘Know Your Risk’ tool among the Suffolk population to help reduce the prevalence of Type 2 diabetes in the local community.

Every two minutes, someone finds out that they have Type 2 diabetes, a potentially serious health condition that can cause long-term health problems. It can lead to sight loss, kidney failure, loss of a limb, and makes you at least twice as likely to have a heart attack or stroke.

The true number of people with diabetes is unknown because a certain number of people are living with the condition but have not yet been diagnosed.

However, it is possible to estimate the number of people with diabetes in Suffolk using prevalence estimates developed by Public Health England – The prevalence estimates suggest that around 7,500 people in Suffolk have undiagnosed Type 2 diabetes.

Around three in five cases of Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed by maintaining a healthy weight, eating well and being active.

In England, by completing the ‘Know Your Risk’ tool, you can find out if you are at risk of Type 2 diabetes and are eligible for the Healthier You NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme.

The Know Your Risk tool is not a diagnostic tool, but it is designed for people without a current diagnosis of diabetes and is intended to highlight a person’s risk of developing Type 2 diabetes in the next 10 years.

William Hadfield, Clinical Lead Dietetics for ICS Health and Wellbeing, said

“Type 2 diabetes is a very serious health condition, but the good news is there are lots of things you can do to reduce your risk.

If you are at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, you may be eligible for referral to your local Healthier You service. This NHS-funded programme can support you to make simple changes to your diet and lifestyle. They are easy to incorporate into your everyday routine and can significantly reduce your risk of diabetes-related health problems.”

Cllr James Reeder, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Prevention, said:

 “Early monitoring, diagnosis and support can make a huge difference in helping people to prevent or manage diabetes. Type 2 Diabetes is preventable, this is why it is so important to be aware of the warning signs, and how you can reduce your risk of developing the condition.

Fitness programmes such as OneLife Suffolk’s Get Help to Get Active service offer people support to either prevent or manage their diabetes. OneLife Suffolk also offer free Adult Weight Management support and a Stop Smoking service.”

Visit https://riskscore.diabetes.org.uk/start to access the Diabetes UK ‘Know your risk’ tool.

If you find our you are at risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes and haven’t already been referred, ask your GP, Nurse, or NHS Health Check professional to refer you to your local Healthier You programme.

More information about preventing Type 2 diabetes can be found on our website HERE.

Mental Health and Wellbeing Resources

As we find ourselves in a second lockdown, it is vital that we all take the time to look after our mental health and wellbeing, as well as look out for our family and friends.

We’ve listed some resources that you might find useful:

Five Ways to Wellbeing

Simple, free and meaningful things we can all do to improve our wellbeing.

www.healthysuffolk.org.uk/projects/5-ways-to-wellbeing/advice-for-staying-well-at-home

Coronavirus and your mental health

Includes information about mask anxiety, how to cope with difficult feelings during the pandemic, how to cope with going back to work and more.

www.mind.org.uk/information-support/coronavirus/

One You – Every Mind Matters

10 tips that will help you keep on top of your mental wellbeing and cope with how you are feeling whilst staying at home.

www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/coronavirus-covid-19-staying-at-home-tips/

Time to Change – Let’s end mental health discrimination

Coronavirus and mental health: Supporting someone during Covid-19.

www.time-to-change.org.uk/coronavirus

NHS: 5 steps to mental wellbeing

Five simples things that you can do to improve your mental health and wellbeing, to help you feel more positive.

www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/improve-mental-wellbeing/

Action For Happiness: Action Calendar

This month is ‘New Ways November’. This calendar prompts you to complete a daily action to help boost your wellbeing, improve your confidence and build emotional resilience.

www.actionforhappiness.org/new-ways-november

Keep Moving Suffolk

Physical activity benefits both your physical and mental health. Keep Moving Suffolk is there to help you incorporate exercise into your daily life.

www.keepmovingsuffolk.com/

‘Fast and effective’ adapted weight management and stop smoking services praised by residents

Suffolk residents have praised the support, advice and lifeline they have received for weight management and stop smoking programmes during the COVID-19 pandemic, with 95% stating in a survey that they have been happy with the support they have received.

The services are provided by OneLife Suffolk, which is commissioned by Suffolk County Council to deliver an Integrated Healthy Lifestyle Service across the county. This includes Stop Smoking Clinics, Weight Management for Adults and Children and Get Help to Get Active which is aimed at encouraging those with lifelong conditions to take part in physical activity.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, OneLife staff have made over 11,000 calls to residents who have been identified that could be potentially experiencing high anxiety due to their health conditions. Health conditions that could put them at risk of further complications if they contracted Covid-19. These calls have often been unexpected by the recipients but hugely praised as it was the only contact some have received.

OneLife Suffolk Stop Smoking Clinics have been conducted via 1-2-1 telephone appointments, while weight management programmes have been delivered via Zoom video calls with additional 1-2-1 support for adults, families and children that need it most.

The Get Help to Get Active programme is still accessible and supported via online and postal resources, with regular phone calls from Active Lifestyle Practitioners.

The OneLife Suffolk team created a range of additional online resources to support people during the pandemic. These have included a series of podcasts and videos around mindfulness, motivation and eating healthily, whilst information sheets were created around managing emotions and looking after wellbeing while self-isolating.

Lisa Cox, Head of Service at OneLife Suffolk, said: ‘We’re delighted we were able to swiftly move our staff to work from home safely and adapt our services to support clients during COVID-19 lockdown, many of whom may have felt vulnerable in this challenging period.’

‘Since the lockdown commenced, I am proud our staff have made over 11,000 calls to ensure that those who are most in need can continue to benefit from our services and enjoy a regular friendly chat.’

With new evidence showing the links between obesity and the most severe cases of Covid-19 and the Government’s announcement about its new public health campaign, we hope many more residents will be able to join our life-changing programmes.’

A survey of over 100 clients commissioned by OneLife Suffolk has shown that the people it supports have been fully embracing its programmes during Covid-19, with 98% of clients rating the service as good or outstanding and finding it easy to access the adapted service.

OneLife Suffolk Adult Weight Loss Client said, ‘I actually think I have been more committed to attending the group via Zoom than I might have been if I had to attend in person. It feels more open and easier to talk. With another mentioning that the new adapted service is ‘Fast and Effective.’

Cllr James Reeder, Suffolk County Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health and Prevention, said; ‘I would like to say a big thank you to all of the team at OneLife Suffolk who have swiftly adapted their services during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure that these critical healthy lifestyle services for Suffolk residents have not only continued, but are thriving.’

‘Maintaining a healthy weight and quitting smoking can reduce the risk of developing long-term conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. The latest research also indicates that coronavirus symptoms can be less severe in those who do not smoke and have a healthy weight.’

OneLife Suffolk’s work during coronavirus was also praised by BBC Suffolk Radio when their presenter Mark Murphy awarded them with a ‘Thank you for making a difference during the Coronavirus outbreak’ award.

Photo of Professor Paul Gately

MoreLife welcomes governments strategy to tackle obesity

As a national provider of weight management and other healthy lifestyle services, MoreLife welcomes the government’s new strategy to tackle obesity.

Research has shown the increased risk of serious illness or death from COVID-19, with nearly 8% of critically ill patients with COVID-19 diagnosed as morbidly obese, compared with 2.9% of the general population.

Professor Paul Gately, founder / CEO of MoreLife, professor at the Leeds Beckett University and strategic advisor on the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Obesity which provided evidence to ensure appropriate measures have been taken, says:

“The long-term health risks of people being overweight or obese have been brought into sharp focus by the Covid-19 pandemic and we look forward to proactively supporting Public Health England’s “Better Health” campaign. With over two-thirds (63%) of the adult population in England living with obesity and one in three children leaving primary school overweight or obese, there has never been a better time to tackle this issue and help people to live longer, healthier and happier lives while reducing the strain on the NHS.”

MoreLife is commissioned by local health commissioners across England to deliver evidence-based adult weight-management programmes which improve health outcomes for local populations. Our current contracts for weight management and other healthy lifestyle services are in Bedfordshire & Milton Keynes, South & West Essex, Greater Manchester, Suffolk and Wakefield. All our contracts are commissioned by local CCG’s and councils.

Alongside our weight-management programmes, we deliver integrated school and workplace-based health and wellness programmes and provide consultancy for a wide range of corporate partners on key health-related projects.

Professor Paul Gately added:

“We are particularly pleased to hear about the government’s plans to expand weight management services through increased funding within the NHS and to incentivise healthcare practitioners to provide patients with relevant support to tackle their obesity.

With 90% of our service users referred to us by a GP, healthcare practitioner or related service, we know there is merit in a collaborative approach to tackling obesity. We will be working with existing and new primary care partners to tackle the national obesity challenge.”Picture is of Professor Paul Gately MD of MoreLife

MoreLife is the parent company of OneLife Suffolk