Coronavirus - latest advice 23.09.20
We would like to thank our patients & our hard working staff for adhering to the changes we have made over the last few months with regard to Coronavirus, these certainly have been challenging times. We hope you are continuing to follow Government Guidelines and being sensible with social distancing.
Unfortunately, we still a long way from providing 'normal' services as we did before. We have put measures in place such as 2m distancing before entering the practice, had screens put up in our reception area, distanced our waiting area chairs, completely changed our way of working through telephone & video consultations to name but a few. We would also encourage patients that are attending for an appointment to wear a mask, scarf or face covering. The press have unfortunately perceived general practice as not seeing patients face to face, we would like to enforce if there is a clinical need to see a patient we will ask you to come down to the practice, this has been the case since March. It is not clinically necessary to see all patients face to face hence the reason for a telephone consultation first or a video consultation.
We can still only have approximately 11 chairs in the waiting area that can be of use, this means we are doing our very best to distance anyone attending surgery by staggering patient appointment times as we are already seeing patients for urgent bloods, dressings, cytology, continuing to see antenatal and postnatal ladies and children's vaccinations but this is understandably difficult to go back to providing routine care. Unfortunately we will be unable to do ear-syringing at the moment and some minor procedures.
As you can appreciate we are unable to provide pre-bookable appointments yet, we will continue to deal with all appointments by triaging patients over the phone and if the clinician wishes to see you, an appointment will be given at a suitable time. Please do not come down to the practice to be seen without speaking to a clinician first, you will be turned away as this is a risk to yourself and others. If you are worried about cancer symptoms please do not delay in ringing and speaking to us.
If you are given an appointment please arrive on time (not early) and preferably on your own (if you can) this also helps with distancing control measures.
We thank you again for your continued support and help during these unprecedented times.
Please also visit LIVE WELL for advice and tips on healthy eating/exercise/alcohol and a whole host of help and ideas to help you make the best choices about your physical health, mental health and wellbeing during lockdown.
Flu injections Time of Year ……….
From this week we will be sending our flu invites out to our 'over 65 patients' and patients in an 'at risk category under 65', instructions will be on the letter of how to book and where it will be held.
We will be operating our flu clinics in a safe and organised way as usual.
Children will be sent for in due course by letter.
The additional category of age 50-64 year olds will be called for once further guidance is issued. We will keep you updated please do not contact the practice regarding this.
FIT TO FLY AIRLINE LETTERS
On 4th July Uk travel advice changed with exemptions for travelling to certain countries and territories that no longer pose a high risk for British travellers.
The Government website provides guidance for those planning to travel abroad.
It is not our policy to issue Covid-19 certificates for international travel purposes.
Vulnerable groups and Volunteers - click below for help and information: Poster - Help and Volunteering
Help for Carers
Please click on the two ways that help is available to you:
Access to virtual support:
Shielding Letters- Frequently Asked Questions
We are currently getting a considerable amount of queries regarding the clinical risk letters which were sent out to patients. this link gives some answers to the some frequently asked questions Patient FAQ's
Appointments & Phoning the Practice
We have moved to a telephone based service and reduced the face to face contact in a bid to slow the spread of coronavirus in the community.
This is a dramatic new way of working, so please do bear with us and be kind to our staff.
If you are worried about Covid Symtoms please click on this link https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ for the latest advice as it is changing all the time
We have cancelled most of our pre-booked routine appointments and are not booking follow up appointments at the present time. We are still doing urgent bloods including Warfarin, post natals & baby injections, pre-school injections and smears. Should you not be well on the day of your appointment please cancel it. All patients will be triaged at the main door to ensure you are well enough to still have your appointment.
If you require an isolation note please click on this link https://111.nhs.uk/isolation-note/
We have been made aware of some posts on social media saying that if you have a respiratory/lung condition, your GP will issue a rescue pack of steroids and antibiotics.
For people with asthma, it is not recommended as standard management. If someone's asthma is bad enough to consider steroids they should be assessed by a health care professional.
Further information can be found on https://www.asthma.org.uk/
Rescue packs may be part of the agreed management plan for some people with COPD. If you NORMALLY have a rescue pack to treat your lung condition its a good idea to check that you have one.
Please bear with us, your help and understanding is appreciated.
ORDERING AND COLLECTION OF PRESCRIPTIONS
Due to the current Coronavirus pandemic Orchard Medical Practice will be introducing a system called Electronic Repeat Dispensing for some patients. This process will allow you to order your repeat medication via your regular pharmacy, rather than through the practice. For more information on Electronic Repeat Dispensing please visit this link - https://psnc.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/eRepeat-Dispensing-leaflet.pdf
To keep patients to a minimum coming down to the practice to order and collect prescriptions please sign up to a pharmacy of your choice so we can send your prescription directly to that pharmacy, they can also order your prescription too. This would be really helpful to you, the practice and the public.
Try the new NHS App
If you’re a patient at our practice you can now use the new NHS App, a simple and secure way to access a range of NHS services on your smartphone or tablet.
You can use the NHS App to check your symptoms and get instant advice, book appointments, order repeat prescriptions, view your GP medical record and more.
If you already use Systmonline you can continue to use it. You can use the NHS App as well.
For more information go to www.nhs.uk/nhsapp'
And in other news at the practice ……...
Dr Judy Jones retired from the practice at the end of April, we wish her every happiness for the future.
Dr Theyvanai Dodd became a Partner on 1st May 2020, we are delighted to have her on board as a Partner after being a Salaried GP with us for the last couple of years.
Dr Nicolas Britchford became a Salaried GP on 1st April 2020, he has been a locum with us for the last few months and we are very pleased he has joined the practice.