Latest developments at the Practice
COVID-19 BOOSTER VACCINATION PROGRAMME
COVID-19 booster doses are available for eligible patients who have had 2 doses of the vaccine. Please do not phone the surgery regarding booster doses. You will be contacted directly when it is your turn to be vaccinated. For more information please visit the following link:
In the meantime, it is vitally important that we all continue to follow the national public health guidance:
- wash your hands regularly,
- wear a face covering in enclosed spaces
- maintain safe social distancing.
Covid-19 is still very prevalent and highly infectious: the risk of catching it is the same as ever for people who have not been vaccinated.
FLU VACCINATION PROGRAMME
Unfortunately, our flu vaccine delivery has been delayed and so we have had to cancel our upcoming clinics. We are due a delivery on Wednesday 29th September and once the vaccines arrive we will be contacting eligible patients and releasing appointments for Friday 1st October and further dates in the coming weeks. Thank you for your patience.
WEARING A FACE COVERING IN HEALTHCARE SETTINGS
Covid-19 restrictions came to an end in many settings in England on Monday 19th July. However, current infection prevention control guidelines for healthcare settings remain unchanged. This means that staff and patients are still required to wear a mask and follow social distancing rules when visiting any healthcare setting, including GP practices.
Please click the link below for further information:
The practice reception area is now open for patients to walk in. There is a limit to how many patients we will be allowing into the practice at any one time in order to comply with social distancing measures. You may still need to wait outside if the waiting area is at full capacity. A one-way system has been introduced so that when you enter through the main door, once seen you will be advised to exit the building through the side door. We are offering face-to-face appointments, however all patients must be triaged by the doctor first through a telephone consultation.
NHS Digital are launching a new way of collecting data from GP practices in order to support the planning of NHS services and for research purposes.
As a practice we are legally required to participate in the sharing of this data. We must also be clear and transparent with our patients about how their data is handled and shared. There is growing concern that the general public remain largely unaware of this significant change, which is due to come into effect on 1st September 2021.
We want to alert you to this change to allow you to think about your options and consider whether you wish to opt out of this data sharing.
Everything that you need to know about the new process, including how to opt-out, can be found by clicking on this link: https://digital.nhs.uk/…/general…/gp-privacy-notice
You can download a Type 1 Opt-out form by clicking on this link: Type 1 Opt-out Form
Once you have completed the form, please email to us on email@example.com or post to the surgery. We will then add the relevant code to your medical record to register your dissent.
Other Practice News
We are now providing video consultations with the leading online GP provider, Push Doctor. This means there will be more availability for our patients to access NHS GPs via video appointment, with the option to receive prescriptions, sick notes and referrals from the comfort of your own home and at a time that suits you.
The practice remains open as normal for telephone and face-to-face consultations; video appointments are simply an additional, complimentary service for those who would prefer to be seen from home, and are usually available quicker than face-to-face appointments.
When you phone the practice, the receptionist may offer you a Push Doctor appointment and provide an SMS link inviting you to register with the Push Doctor service. You are then able to book appointments at your own convenience up to 5 days in advance. If you would prefer to speak to a particular GP at the practice, the receptionist will offer you the first available telephone consultation with this doctor.
Click here to find more information about how video consultations work. We hope you welcome this expansion and modernisation of our services as openly and enthusiastically as we do.
We have an intercom system installed at the front door for patients to use. This enables patients to easily announce their arrival at the surgery. If you have an appointment, please press the button to the right of the front door and wait for assistance. The receptionist will ask for your name and details and mark you as ‘arrived’ in the clinical system which will alert the doctor/nurse/HCA that you are waiting. We are hoping that this will facilitate a more efficient arrival process and reduce waiting times at the front door.
We are still here for you if you need to see or talk to a doctor. Please call the practice or book a telephone appointment through online services if you are registered. We offer urgent same-day and routine telephone appointments. Your consultation will start over the phone, but if the GP feels a video consultation would be more appropriate (provided you have a smartphone) they can send you a secure link to initiate this. This works for Apple and Android phones. Our current waiting time for routine telephone appointments is approx. 6 days.
All consultations with a GP will initially take place over the telephone / video call. If the GP feels you need to be seen, you will be given a face-to-face appointment at the practice. The front door is now unlocked and a limited number of patients will be allowed into the practice waiting area. We have strict infection control measures in place to keep our patients and staff safe. We are currently only using the downstairs consulting rooms for face to face appointments and these are cleaned in-between each patient to reduce the risk of contamination.
- Please do not arrive more than 10 minutes before your appointment as there is limited space in the practice for patients who are waiting.
- Please press the intercom and wait outside. A member of staff will let you in.
- You may need to wait outside if the practice waiting area is at full capacity.
- All patients entering the practice MUST wear a face covering.
- Please do not bring any extra items with you and do not bring anyone else with you (except for children / carers / interpreters).
- The downstairs toilet is available to patients. Please use the wipes available to clean all surfaces after use.
- When inside the surgery, please maintain a 2 metre distance between yourself and other people.
- Please use hand sanitiser on entering and leaving the premises.
IF YOU HAVE COVID-19 SYMPTOMS
If you have any of the following symptoms:
- High temperature
- New continuous cough
- Loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
Please DO NOT come to the surgery. Stay at home and book a COVID-19 test:
If you cannot manage your symptoms yourself, please contact the surgery and request a same-day telephone appointment. The GP can signpost you to the COVID HUB – they will contact you by telephone to assess your case and see you face to face if necessary.
eConsult is an electronic service which pops up on the home page of many practice websites and enables our practice to offer online consultations to our patients. This allows you to submit your symptoms or requests to your own GP electronically, and offers around the clock NHS self-help information, signposting to services, and a symptom checker.
You can access eConsult by clicking on the banner on the home page of our website, or by visiting https://patients.econsult.health/ and searching for St Margaret’s Medical Practice. Once you have submitted your consultation you can expect to receive a response from the practice by the end of the next working day. Please note, eConsult will signpost you to other services (e.g. A&E, 111, pharmacy) if it is deemed more appropriate or if it flags up urgent symptoms.
As a result of the coronavirus pandemic it is very useful to be able to contact your practice online. We encourage you to register for our online services, which you can use from your laptop or your smartphone. This will allow you to book and cancel telephone appointments, request prescriptions, access your medical record and view test results at your own convenience without having to visit the practice or wait in a telephone queue.
Please call the practice to request your login details which can be provided immediately.
All prescriptions will be electronically sent to your nominated pharmacy to reduce footfall into the practice. You can request your prescription through online services and state which pharmacy you would like your prescription sent to. If you do not have online access, you can post your written request through the practice letterbox.
NURSE / HEALTH CARE ASSISTANT APPOINTMENTS
We are continuing to offer a full range of services:
- Cervical Screening
- Childhood Immunisations
- Blood tests
- Telephone reviews for long term conditions (e.g. Asthma, COPD, Diabetes)
- B12 Injections, Shingles & Pneumonia vaccinations
- Flu jabs
- Travel Vaccinations
- 24 hour Blood Pressure monitoring (ABPM)
- Dressings / Stitch removal
- Coil & Implant fittings
- INR Monitoring
If you receive a text message encouraging you to make an appointment at the practice for any of the above, please do not hesitate to do so.
We will be frequently reviewing this information and updating it as things change.
Last updated on 27th September 2021