Information Now

18 Jan 2019 InfoNOW News


Your Equipment Newcastle
Plans to introduce gambling spending blocks
Planning a holiday or getaway
Are you eligible for a free NHS prescription?
The NHS Long Term Plan launched

Research & Reports

Pension forecast gloomy
The Next Generation Report

Opportunities for Action

Dancing keeps you happy and healthy
Are you 70 years old or more?  Take part in research study with Northumbria University
Have you got a neurological condition? Take part in a patient experience survey.
Disability champions needed for
Changes in the over  75 years TV Licence
Street Zero – against rough sleeping

New on InformationNOW this week!

‘City of Palaces’, Richard Grainger
This week’s events & activities at a glance
Life Laundry
This Girl Can

Articles & organisations

Home adaptations, equipment and aids
Financial Ombudsman Service
Financial Conduct Authority
Dementia Advice Centre


Your Equipment Newcastle

Are you having problems carrying out day to day tasks?  Is it difficult to get to the toilet, move around your home or go into the garden?  Are you worried about slipping in the shower or managing the food on your plate?

The Council has launched Your Equipment Newcastle to help you find and buy useful products.  There are three steps to helpful information:

  1.  Choose a topic
  2.  Answer some questions
  3.  Get a personal report on products that might help you.

For more information about services and activities in Newcastle, have a look at Information NOW.

Plans to introduce gambling spending blocks

Lloyds Bank, Santander Bank and Royal Bank of Scotland plan to introduce controls for customers over where they can spend their money, including blocking gambling payments. Further information is available here.  InformationNOW has an article on addictions.

Planning a holiday or getaway?

Many people take advantage of early discounts to book their spring or summer holiday. Here are a few tips:

Take part in the Government’s aviation strategy consultation.

Are you eligible for a free NHS prescription?

There has been media coverage about difficulties over eligibility for free prescriptions.  Guidance is available from the NHS along with an eligibility checker.  You can ring 0300 330 1341 for information about medical exemptions.

If you are claiming Universal Credit, the current prescription does not have a tick box for universal credit. You need to tick option K, indicating JSA payment and not ESA.  Ticking the wrong box results in a £135 penalty notice.

The NHS Long Term Plan launched

Last summer the Prime Minister committed to a five-year budget settlement for the NHS and this week saw the launch of the Long Term Plan, detailing how and where that money will be spent.

The Plan focuses on giving everyone the best start in life:  offering a national health check for people aged 40 years plus;, improved care for people with heart conditions and stroke; support for veterans entering civilian life: new services for people smoking and drinking to excess and new treatments for life threatening conditions such as cancer and respiratory disease.

Until summer 2019, staff, patients and the public will have the opportunity to help their local NHS work out what The NHS Long Term Plan means for their area and how to meet the NHS national ambitions in their community.  Join the conversation: #NHSLongTermPlan


Pension forecast gloomy

The Financial Conduct Authority warns that people are still not saving enough towards their retirement.  Despite sector changes, pension scams and low levels of trust, confidence and understanding all continue to undermine  our prospects of a comfortable retirement.  People are  lukewarm  at the prospect of spending their time and money preparing for retirement any fewer than half of those with a pension, read their annual statement. A large proportion of those withdrawing cash from pension pots are choosing to reinvest it in non-pensions options. Of the 55 % who are taking full withdrawals nearly 52% are placing these assets in cash or investments within ISAs, savings or bank accounts.

InformationNOW has an article on pensions and avoiding fraud and scams.

The Next Generation report

United for all ages aims to improve care and housing, reduce loneliness and ensure that children have a great start in life.  They aim to bring generations together to share and learn from each other. Anything can be tackled intergenerationally: from mental health to crime, from poverty to education. Topics can be explored by bringing people together and changing attitudes.  Their latest report, The Next Generation, explores how different organisations have bridged the generations and created meaningful outcomes for both young and old. #thenextgeneration
Recommendations include:

  • every region should create areas for young and old to mix together
  • every Council should offer opportunities for meaningful mixing of ages
  • funders should provide monies towards building trust between generations and reducing ageism in society

Opportunities for Action

Dancing keeps you happy and healthy

Dancing is great for the mind and body and can improve and enrich our lives. Dance City have come up with 19 reasons to take up dance, including: you will get stronger, there is no age limit and you can have fun. Thinking of getting fit and active this year?  Look at Information NOW’s events and activities section on dancing.

Are you 70 years old or more?  Take part in research study with Northumbria University.

Researchers are beginning a new study into changes in function as adults get older.  This study will ask you about the activities that you find difficult and the things that you would like to do more of in your day to day life.  So, if you are having difficulties with getting out and about or moving around your home; sleeping, general health or mood, your information may be useful to the team. You can take part in an online survey or it can be posted to you.

Contact Sarah or read the online information.

Have you got  a neurological condition? Give your feedback on services

The Neurological Alliance is looking for people to take part in their patient experience survey.  The survey enables them to understand what’s good, and what’s poor, in people’s experience of local services. As with their previous biannual survey, they will use the results to campaign for improvements to these services. They plan to publish a report with findings and recommendations in summer 2019.  Closing date: 29 March 2019.

Disability champions wanted

The government (GOV.UK) is looking for business leaders to be ‘disability sector champions’ and drive improvements to the accessibility and quality of services and facilities in these areas:

  • countryside and heritage
  • fashion
  • food and drink
  • product design
  • retail
  • technology
  • website accessibility

Changes in the over 75 years TV Licence

In 2015, the Government announced that it would be passing over the responsibility for funding the concessionary TV licence for the over 75s to the BBC from 2020. Last November, the BBC launched a consultation on the future of the concession, and made it clear that the current arrangement was not to be considered. Take part in the online survey or send your comments and views to Sir David Clementi, Chairman, BBC Board, BBC Broadcasting House, Portland Place, London W1A 1AA. The deadline for the consultation is 12 February 2019.

You can also sign the Age UK petition.

Street Zero – against rough sleeping

Street Zero has been launched.  This is a partnership that aims to develop practical actions to alleviate disadvantage and suffering so that no one needs to sleep rough.  An emergency fund is just one way of offering immediate support.  If you see someone sleeping rough, let the Council know by emailing or by calling 0191 278 3899.

Information NOW has an article on Worried about becoming homeless

New on InformationNOW

‘City of Palaces’: how Richard Grainger changed Newcastle, 21 January, 1pm, West End Community & Information Hub and Library

Olive Taylor will give an illustrated talk about the achievements of the 19th century developer, Richard Grainger at West End Library.Grainger, with his colleagues,, John Clayton and architect, John Dobson,  were responsible for transforming the centre of Newcastle from a ramshackle medieval town into one of the finest city centres in Europe.

Life Laundry, Tuesday 29 January, 10.30 to 1.30 pm, Good Space, Commercial Union House, Pilgrim Street

Elders Council, working with the Workers’ Educational Association Finance team, have arranged a course on Life Laundry.  Do you struggle to understand your bills and avoid paperwork? do you worry about your financial future but not plan for it? do you have unopened letters or are you worried that you will be taken in by a scam? This is the course for you.  To register email Pauline Rutherford or phone 0191 208 2701.
Information NOW has a section on money and fraud and scams.

This Girl Can, 7 March from 5.30 to 8pm

Sign up for This Girl Can  run by Active Newcastle at Exhibition Park.  This is an event to celebrate women of all abilities, but all genders are welcome. You can walk, run or jog. Wear bright clothes or carry a glow stick to stand out.  #BalanceforBetter.

Articles and organisations updated

Articles Updated

Home adaptations, equipment and aids

New and updated organisations

  • Financial Ombudsman Service
  • Financial Conduct Authority
  • Dementia Advice Centre


Last updated: January 21, 2019

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