The NHS and Public Health England (PHE) are well prepared for outbreaks of new infectious diseases. The NHS has put in place measures to ensure the saftey of all patients and NHS staff while also ensuring services are available to the public as normal.
The latest information on symptoms of coronavirus infection and areas where recent travel may have resulted in a high risk of exposure can be found on www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/.
Check if you need medical help
NHS 111 has an online coronavirus service that can tell you if you need medical help and advise you what to do.
Use this service if:
- you think you might have coronavirus
- in the last 14 days you've been to a country or area with a high risk of coronavirus – see NHS coronavirus advice for travellers
- you've been in close contact with someone with coronavirus
Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service to check if you need medical help.
Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. Call 111 if you need to speak to someone.
You can help too
Everyone is being reminded to follow Public Health England advice to:
- Always carry tissues with you and use them to catch your cough or sneeze. Then bin the tissue, and wash your hands, or use a sanitiser gel.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after using public transport. Use a sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are unwell.
For more information from the government and Public Health England, click here.
Sick notes for self isolation
We are getting a lot of phone calls asking for sick notes for people self isolating (either 7 days for symptoms or 14 days for household members with symptoms).
Please use the link below to access a sick note online from NHS 111.
If you are able to work from home, you won't need a sick note, so please discuss this with your employer.
Covid-19 Update 13.03.20
IMPORTANT NOTICE REGARDING CHANGES TO THE APPOINTMENT SYSTEM
As you will all be aware we are facing a constantly changing situation with regards to the Covid-19 Pandemic. We understand how anxious you all are at the moment and will continue to do our best for you in these uncertain times. We are taking measures in line with guidance shared by NHS England and Public Health authorities to minimise risks associated with the virus.
In order to try to protect our most vulnerable patients, from Monday 16 March we are trying to reduce all face to face appointments to a minimum.
In order to protect our patients and staff and we are asking our patients support with this.
As of the 13th March 2020, the guidance is that if you have a new continuous cough (within the past 7 days) or a fever (temp above 37.8) you should self-isolate at home and only contact NHS 111 (preferably through the website), if you are really concerned. This might be because of shortness of breath or worsening symptoms.
What does this mean for you?
We are asking all patients not to attend the practice without prior agreement from a member of our clinical team. From Monday 16th March 2020 we want to minimise the number of patients attending the Practice for face to face appointments. This means that all patients are required to contact the practice by telephone to request an appointment, providing details of their need. A member of the clinical team will then phone you back to discuss your need, and wherever possible this need will be met over the telephone. If the Clinician deems that you require a face to face appointment, you will be asked some screening questions to determine whether there is a need for a coronavirus assessment. If this is the case you will be asked to self-isolate for 7 days. If there is no risk you will be given a face to face appointment.
All pre-existing appointments are being reviewed by the clinical team. If it is deemed that your appointment is not urgent this may be cancelled and re-scheduled at a later date by the Practice. If the appointment needs to go ahead, wherever possible this will take place over the telephone. If your appointment is being cancelled or changed to telephone, our administrative team will contact you to advise you of this. If the appointment needs to be face to face you will be contacted prior the appointment and asked some screening questions to ensure it is appropriate for you to attend the Practice.
Access to the Surgery
Access to the building will be restricted to the patients who have been invited for an appointment by a Clinician.
We request as many patients as possible order their repeat prescriptions using the practice online services. Paper requests for repeat prescriptions have temporarily been suspended, again to avoid the spread of the virus and you will not be able to collect your prescription from the surgery. We will electronically send the prescription to your nominated pharmacy.
To order a repeat prescription, please either:
- Telephone the surgery between the hours of 10.00am and 3.00pm
- Request online. If not registered please contact the surgery to register for online services.
- Email the request to: email@example.com
Please note that it takes us 48 hours to process your prescription requests and you will need to inform the receptionist the exact names of the medications you are requesting.
Please remain courteous to our staff at all times. Any incidents of verbal or physical abuse will result in removal from the practice list. As you might expect all our staff are working hard to implement these changes at short notice and we may have staff shortages due to self-isolation. Please be patient with us as we are having to adapt our plans every day.
This is a very challenging time for us all and we would appreciate your co-operation during this period of uncertainty.
In order for the surgery to remain open as long as possible, our priority is the health and safety of all our patients and staff.