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Keeping fit and well

Your health and wellbeing is really important to us and we want to make sure you have access to facilities and services so that you feel healthy and fit.

Support includes:

Leisure Pass: All care leavers aged 16 to 25-years-old living in the Borough are offered a Brio Leisure Pass. Care Leavers who live outside the Borough can gain funding from the Children's Service Child Trust Fund to pay for a gym membership in their local area.

Health assessments/health summaries: Care leavers continue to have health assessments annually until aged 18. These will be carried out by the Looked After Children (LAC) nurse. If you have a specific health needs your social worker and LAC nurse will discuss with you how these can be met as part of your Pathway Plan and offer you advice and support on how to access health services. As a care leaver, you will be supported by your Personal Adviser with booking and attending health appointments and accessing transport for appointments (requires agreement beforehand).

Accessing your health record: At your final review health assessment, you will be offered a written summary of your health history by your named Health Professional. Having access to your health history can be useful. It is your right to have a record of what you have been treated for in the past. A copy of this health summary will be stored with your General Practitioner (GP) so that it is always available to you and, if you agree, a copy can also be saved on your Social Care record too.

This will include any information available about:

  • your birth (including time of birth, birth weight etc.)
  • immunisations that you have received during childhood
  • illnesses or surgery that you may have had
  • allergies
  • medication
  • known family health history
  • any other information regarding your health that may be important to you

GP registration

Prior to your 18th birthday, you will be supported to ensure you are registered with a General Practitioner (GP) practice which is accessible to where you are living.

Information and guidance will be provided on how to access GP appointments, when it is appropriate to attend the GP surgery as opposed to Accident and Emergency department (A&E), how to access GP services out-of-hours, etc.

Teeth and oral health

Prior to leaving care, you will receive advice on how to make sure you are still able to access dental health services, including information on local NHS dental practices.

Your Personal Adviser will be able to help you to find a dental practice that's convenient for you. If you do not have a regular dental practice, or are new to the area, you can search for an NHS dentist near you on the NHS England website.

Good dental health is essential to enable you to remain healthy and it is recommended that you visit your dentist for a check-up every six months.

In relation the dental care you may be eligible for financial support for dental checks and treatment it you are:

  • aged 16 to 18-years-old and in full-time education
  • pregnant or had a baby in the last 12 months
  • in receipt of Universal credit
  • on a low income and have a Health Credit Certificate (known as HC2 or HC3 certificate).

Vision

The NHS recommends that you should get your eyes tested every two years (more often if advised by your optician).

An NHS sight test is free of charge if you are in one of the eligible groups considered clinically necessary. If the ophthalmic practitioner can't see a clinical need then you'll have to pay for the test privately.

Opticians will prescribe and fit glasses and contact lenses, and, if necessary, they will refer you to a GP or a hospital eye clinic for further investigations.

Sexual Health Services

Sexual Health services can help and support you to maintain a healthy sexual relationship, prevent unplanned pregnancy and detect and treat sexually transmitted infections. Free emergency contraception (the morning after pill) is available at chemists and some NHS walk-in centres and minor injuries units. For information on all sexual health services available in the local area visit:

Sexual health

National sexual health information and services:

Substance use

If you have difficulties with drugs, alcohol, smoking or vaping, please speak to your PA for support. You can also access the following services who can help you to meet your own goals whether that’s making small changes, stopping using substances completely or just getting some advice:

Mental wellbeing and Mental Health

At times, we all face challenges in life that can impact our mental wellbeing.

Mental Health problems can be caused by physical, mental, or social conditions - or any combination of these. A physical or mental illness, past experiences, difficult relationships, and stresses such as unemployment and drug or alcohol problems can all play a part.

If your mental or emotional state quickly gets worse or deteriorates, this can be called a ‘mental health crisis.’ In this situation, it is important to get help quickly. Please call 0800 145 6485 and dedicated local staff will support you to access the help you need. This phone line is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and is open to people of all ages including children and young people.

For more information on what mental wellbeing is and tips to improve your mental wellbeing, please visit:

5 steps to mental wellbeing

CWAC THOR – Therapy and Therapeutic Outreach Support

The THOR team offers a service to support the emotional wellbeing of Cared for Children and Care Leavers up to the age of 25. THOR offers therapy (up to 24 sessions), therapeutic outreach (up to 12 sessions) and carer/parent support (up to 12 sessions). You do not have to be in education or employment to access the service but you must be supported by a personal advisor, social worker or early help worker so they can refer you to the service.

Café 71

Café 71 is open every day 10am – midnight at No. 71, St Anne Street, Chester, CH1 3HT. This is a non-judgemental, calm, and creative space offering non-clinical crisis support both in person and on the phone. Our service is for anyone 18+ experiencing a self-defined crisis/feeling distressed in Cheshire West and Chester. For more information, please call the café on 01244 393139.

Contacts

Healthcare costs

Students are only entitled to free healthcare treatments up to the age of 18 (or 19, if they're still in education). These include:

  • dental treatments and appointments
  • prescriptions
  • sight tests
  • glasses

Some young people can get help with healthcare costs through the NHS Low Income Scheme if they;

  • have a low income;
  • are pregnant;
  • have certain medical conditions.

See Save the Student guide to cheap healthcare and dentistry to find out what you can apply for.

Save the student