Posted: 29.06.20 at 15:52 by The Editor
Medical bosses at two peninsula surgeries have given their thanks to staff, helpers and volunteers during the Covid-19 crisis, and have issued up to date guidelines on all their activities and services.
Shotley and Holbrook practices, which includes the dispensaries, issued this statement expressing their gratitude.
o Special thanks to Dolly’s Pizza Van and customers who had a fundraising initiative and provided us with free pizzas one lunch time.
o Huge thanks to Holbrook Helpers who have given our staff a huge fruit basket and cakes. These are all very much appreciated.
o I’m sure we’re all grateful to the community groups who have been helping our patients – walking dogs, chirpy phone calls, grocery shopping and collecting prescriptions – thank you all
o Thanks to John Ambrose from Holbrook Parish Council who sprayed our new social distancing ‘footprints’ on the path at Holbrook
o And finally, thank you to our fantastic team of staff who are continuing to work in difficult circumstances, wearing masks in the heat and not socialising so that we continue to keep ourselves and our patients safe. Thank you all, I know the sacrifices you’re making are appreciated and have been effective in reducing the spread of disease.
Holbrook and Shotley Practice update from 1st July 2020:
Please note that whilst the majority of the country is working to a reduced incident level, NHS England have asked us to continue working at incident level 4. This means we will continue with our telephone triage until at least August 1.
Demand is continuing to increase with Mondays being exceptionally busy,
Fridays are also busy and should be for urgent queries only that cannot wait over the weekend. If you can ring Tuesday to Thursday then this would help to spread the workload.
The following is our plan through July, though may be subject to change as the Government issues more guidance.
· Front door: we will continue to run with staff member on door. Please wait to be invited in if you have an appointment and wait outside if you are collecting medication. You should maintain a 2m distance at all times for staff safety and yours.
· Medication collections will continue on existing hours.
· Holbrook Parish Council have now sprayed markings for social distancing on the pavement. Please ensure you stand towards the hedge to allow others to pass on the pavement.
· Shotley patients who are attending for appointments should use the path from the shop to the front door to avoid passing the queue for prescriptions.
· Shielding patients (those at very high risk with a Government letter) will only be seen at Holbrook Monday to Thursday and on Friday morning. Please come to the beginning of the queue and stand at the green “Appointments Only” marker which is distanced from where others stand to collect prescriptions. Do not attend too early to avoid too many people. It is preferable that you do not attend on a Friday afternoon when we may be seeing other patients who are not shielding.
· Only the actual patient should come into waiting room. Children may be accompanied by only one parent. Elderly or infirm patients needing help should only have one person assisting them.
· You will be asked to bring your own face covering to your appointment and will be asked at each point about coronavirus symptoms.
· If you are being seen for appointment, our clinical staff will wear appropriate PPE. This may include a face mask, gloves, apron and visor depending on your appointment type. Some of our non-clinical staff may wearing hospital type scrubs whilst working on the door.
· We are able to see fewer patients face to face as more time is needed between patients to clean rooms and equipment and change PPE.
· We are in the process of having additional screens made for when we reopen our doors. We also have tape ready to mark out 2m distances and additional signage is on order.
· We continue to offer telephone advice and video consultations.
· When you ring or come to the door, you will be asked if you have a temperature, a new continuous cough and/or loss of/change in taste or smell. If you are symptomatic we can still ring you to discuss but may send a car to visit you at home with a specially kitted out staff member from the Suffolk GP Federation.
· Repeat medication can be ordered online via NHS App or SystmOnline or you can put a query through eConsult (blue banner on our website). If you have no online access, you can drop your repeat slip through the letterbox at either site. Note that the letterbox at Shotley is now on the main patient entrance door again.
· eConsult – we recommend patients use eConsult for non-urgent queries including repeat Fit For Work Note/Sick Certificate requests, medication queries, referral to hospital which will send details to our GPs and staff and we can respond via a one way message.
· Some annual checks can be done partially or fully on eConsult. Go to https://holbrookandshotleysurgery.webgp.com/reviews and click on your condition.
There are templates for Asthma, Diabetes, Thyroid, COPD, Hypertension, Contraceptive pill and also for a medication review. Complete the information as fully as possible and we will contact you if necessary once we receive this. You may still be asked to come in but this will reduce the time of your appointment as we can gather information before you attend.
· Our Community Connector may ring our shielding patients to offer help from community groups. Patients are still being added to this list by the practice, hospitals and Government.
· Coronavirus testing is available for patients with symptoms via the NHS website https://www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test website or ring 119 if no internet access.
· Antibody testing is still not available to the general public.
· A lip speaker is available for those who are hard of hearing. Contact Natalie Farrugia at [email protected] or on 07860 373317. Natalie has kindly offered to help but is not employed by the practice. By contacting Natalie directly you understand the confidentiality issues.
· Over 70s – should where possible ask a family or friend to collect medication for them. If there is absolutely no-one who can do this then we are very helpfully supported by the community groups. Please ring reception if you are not already in touch with them and we can give you the number of the nearest group to you.
· Childhood immunisations and baby checks – the midwife and health visitor are contacting patients and giving advice over the phone or organising for patients to come in when necessary. Parents should still bring their children for their immunisations and baby checks. Our usual six week postnatal check will now be combined with the eight week immunisations so you only need to attend once and will see both the nurse and doctor. This will be at our Holbrook site.
· Cervical screening – if you receive a recall letter and are concerned, please ring reception and we will book a telephone appointment with the nurse who can advise you what to do.
· For mental health issues due to coronavirus visit Mind.org