COVID-19

Haltwhistle Medical Group

 

It’s essential you protect yourself and others against both flu and COVID-19.

The #COVID19 vaccination programme continues and expands following new advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) . This will strengthen our defences against the #OmicronVariant and will be offered to patients as below:

Everyone over 18 will be offered a booster dose

Boosters will be given at least three months after the second dose

12-15 year-olds will be offered a second dose, at least 12 weeks after the first

Severely immunosuppressed people will be offered a fourth dose

 

Boosters will continue to be offered in priority order to protect those most at risk from the virus therefore not everyone will be eligible as soon as they hit 3 months from their second vaccine. The NHS will contact you and invite you when you're eligible to receive yours, current guidance remains at 6 months after your second vaccine however we are expecting this to become 3 months in due course. If you are unable to book, it is because the system is prioritising at the moment...

 

Find out if you are eligible for a free flu vaccine and a COVID-19 booster. nhs.uk/WinterVaccinations

https://www.gov.uk/.../jcvi-advice-on-covid-19-booster...

 

For any advice please call 119.


With restrictions gradually lifting we no longer require patients to ring the intercom to be allowed access into the practice HOWEVER we would like to remind and encourage members of the public to respect the measurements we have put in place to keep each other safe before entering the surgery.

All members of public must:

•Wear a face mask

•Sanitise hands

•Continue social distancing, if there is not an appropriate seat available in the waiting room please let a member of staff know that you will be waiting outside.

YOU MUST NOT ENTER THE BUILDING IF YOU HAVE ANY SYMPTOMS OF COVID, you must test and isolate as per government guidelines. If you are symptomatic and you need to speak to a member of staff please call the surgery on 01434 320077.

 

Self Check-In 

Please check in for your appointment using the self check-in, this is now available for patient use, but may we please remind you to sanitise your hands before and after using the facility.

Once you have checked in please take a seat in the waiting room however if there are no appropriate seats available (seats with a green tick), let a member of staff know you will be waiting outside.

 

 


The NHS have issued some important information to keep you safe while isolating at home.

If you have been identified as having COVID19 or as a contact of somebody who has contracted the virus and been advised to isolate, this leaflet holds key information on how to stay safe during this time whether you are looking after yourself or somebody else please read to find out more about when to seek urgent medical assistance, concerns during pregnancy, COVID19 symptoms and recovery.

Isolating at Home


Safety measures

COVID-19 : Visiting your GP Surgery 


COVID-19 protections are still in place in surgery.


In line with Government guidance patients are required to continue to wear a face covering in all healthcare settings.
Face coverings primarily protect others, so doing so is key to preventing spread of infection.

Continue to respect the 2m social distancing.


Test and isolate if you have any symptoms : If you have symptoms you MUST get a PCR test AS SOON AS POSSIBLE and before visiting your GP surgery. Rapid lateral flow tests should NOT be used to confirm infection.


Wash / sanitise regularly.


We thank you for your support.


Vaccine Passport

From 17 May 2021, people in England who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can demonstrate their vaccination status for international travel. A full course is currently two doses of any approved vaccine. Vaccine status will be available from: 

  • the NHS App which you can download from app stores 

  • the NHS website 

  • 119 - by requesting a paper letter

You will need to register to use the online services, if you have not already. It may take more than a week for your identity to be checked and verified.

If you cannot access the online services, and you have had both doses of the vaccine, you can request a paper letter from the NHS by calling 119. Only call 119 if you are due to travel outside the UK in the near future and have had your second dose more than 5 working days ago. It may take up to 7 working days for the letter to arrive.

This practice is not able to provide you with a letter that shows your COVID-19 vaccination status. Please do not contact the practice about your COVID-19 vaccination status unless you have been advised to by the 119 service.

When you're planning your travel, you should check the latest information on demonstrating your COVID-19 status when travelling abroad on the gov.uk website. Make sure there is enough time to get proof of your COVID-19 vaccination status before you are due to travel.


 

Recovering from COVID

Recovering from COVID-19 can have a physical and mental impact on a person, it has been recognised that some people who have suffered from COVID-19 can take longer to recover than others but there are steps that can be taken to help this process.

https://www.yourcovidrecovery.nhs.uk/ is a website available to help you or someone you know to better understand what has happened and what might expected as part of the recovery process.


 

 

   

Practice News

 

In line with Government recommendations, it is a requirement for patients to wear a face covering when entering the surgery. If you do have an appointment we would be grateful if you could come with your face covering on – covering your nose, mouth and chin. This can be in the form of a mask, scarf or handkerchief of any sort of fabric. This is to help lower the risk of spreading or contracting COVID-19.

 

Unfortunately we are unable to supply face masks to anyone entering the premises due to lack of supply but they must be worn to enter the building.

 

A text message has been sent to all with a mobile number on their record.

If you have not received a text message but think you should have or would like to receive texts in the future please contact the surgery with your mobile number and we can update your record to allow for this. The text messaging service is a great way to get free, up to date information from the practice.

If you have not received a text message but think you should have or would like to receive texts in the future please contact the surgery with your mobile number and we can update your record to allow for this. The text messaging service is a great way to get free, up to date information from the practice. 

Appointments

All GP and Practice Nurse appointments will initially be by telephone - Please ensure we have your up to date telephone contact details.Please only attend the surgery if you have been given an appointment to attend - Please attend alone unless you require a parent/carer to be present, please wear a face covering at all times and observe the 2m social distancing rule.

 

Prescriptions

Unfortunately we are unable to supply face masks to anyone entering the premises due to lack of supply but they must be worn to enter the buildiIf you have a paper prescription request, please leave the requests in the external post box (black post box on the wall to the left hand side of the main entrance.) Alternatively you may call the surgery on 01434 320077 and select option 2 leaving your name, date of birth and items you require or order your prescription online. Please ensure you allow up to 4 working days for your request to be processed.

 

Cervical Smear Appointments

We are operating our cervical screening as normal, appointments are availalbe at the GP surgery and can b ebooked over the telephone on 01434 320077 or online. We also can access smear appointments at the Corbridge Hub on evenings and weekends if you find it difficult to attend during our core hours.If you have received your smear letter and haven't booked an appointment then we would encourage you to do so.

 

E-Consult

We have introduced a new way for patients to contact the practice using an online facility called E-Consult, this service will enable any patient to make direct contact with the practice through a series of questions and prompts simply by clicking the blue banner on the home screen of the website patient information, question or query will be sent direct to the practice via a secure email facility and the practice will respond by the end of the next working day.

 

NHS.UK INFORMATION SUPPORT LINKS

 

General NHS advice 

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

 

For expert information and advice on how COVID-19 impacts specific palliative or  long-term conditions and how to manage your condition during the pandemic.

 

Cancer

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cancer/

HIV and AIDS

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/hiv-and-aids/

Alzheimer’s disease

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/alzheimers-disease/

Sickle cell disease

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/sickle-cell-disease/

Chronic kidney disease

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/kidney-disease/

Cystic fibrosis

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cystic-fibrosis/

Motor neurone disease

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/motor-neurone-disease/

Depression

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/clinical-depression/

End of life care

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/end-of-life-care/

End of life care – Changes in the last hours and days

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/end-of-life-care/changes-in-the-last-hours-and-days/

 

 

Other Patient information links

 

Pituitary/ adrenal insufficiency (including steroid sick day rules)

https://www.endocrinology.org/news/item/14050/Coronavirus-advice-statement-for-patients-with-adrenal%2fpituitary-insufficiency

 

Underlying lung disease (British Lung Foundation)

https://www.blf.org.uk/support-for-you/coronavirus

 

People with Asthma

https://www.asthma.org.uk/advice/triggers/coronavirus-covid-19/

 

People with Diabetes

https://www.diabetes.org.uk/about_us/news/coronavirus

 

People affected by Stroke

https://www.stroke.org.uk/news/coronavirus-information-people-affected-stroke

 

Pregnant women

https://www.rcog.org.uk/en/guidelines-research-services/guidelines/coronavirus-pregnancy/covid-19-virus-infection-and-pregnancy/

 

Children/young people T1 diabetes

https://jdrf.org.uk/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-people-living-with-type-1-diabetes/

 

People with Heart/circulatory disease

https://www.bhf.org.uk/informationsupport/heart-matters-magazine/news/coronavirus-and-your-health

 

Older people

https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/health-wellbeing/conditions-illnesses/coronavirus/# 

 

Young people with anxiety

https://youngminds.org.uk/blog/what-to-do-if-you-re-anxious-about-coronavirus/

 

Adults with anxiety

https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/coronavirus-and-your-wellbeing/

 

People with Rheumatoid Arthritis

https://www.nras.org.uk/news/coronavirus-what-we-know-so-far

 

People with cancer

https://breastcancernow.org/about-us/media/statements/advice-coronavirus-people-cancer

 

People with inflammatory bowel disease

https://www.crohnsandcolitis.org.uk/news/updated-wuhan-novel-coronavirus-advice

 

People with Parkinson’s disease

https://www.parkinsons.org.uk/news/understanding-coronavirus-and-parkinsons

 

People with Multiple Sclerosis

https://www.mssociety.org.uk/about-ms/treatments-and-therapies/disease-modifying-therapies/covid-19-coronavirus-and-ms

 

People with liver disease and liver transplant

https://britishlivertrust.org.uk/coronavirus-covid-19-health-advice-for-people-with-liver-disease-and-liver-transplant-patients/

 

People with kidney disease including dialysis

https://www.kidneycareuk.org/news-and-campaigns/coronavirus-advice/

 

People with epilepsy

https://www.epilepsysociety.org.uk/news/epilepsy-and-coronavirus-09-03-2020#.XnD_g8CnyEc

 

Mental Health and Abuse Support Services

 

  • Northumberland Domestic Abuse Services

Supporting anyone affected by domestic abuse in Northumberland

01434 608030 10am-4.30pm Monday to Friday

https://www.nda.services/

  • If U Care Share

Support for those affected by suicide

www.ifucareshare.co.uk Tel: 0191 387 5661

  • Grace Rape Crisis

Counselling service for victims of sexual abuse

gracenrc.org.uk Tel: 0800 035 2794

  • Tyneside and Northumberland Mind

Counselling for those affected by suicide or a traumatic death.

www.tynesidemind.org.uk Tel: 0191 477 4545

  • Talking Matters Northumberland

Psychological Therapies

www.tmnorthumbeland.org.uk Tel: 0300 3030 700

 

  • Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

Children and young person’s primary mental health

www.northumbria.nhs.uk/ primary-mental-health Tel: 01661 864 588

  • ADAPT

Keeping People Connected Short-term support service for people who have learning disabilities and/or autism

adapt-ne.org.uk Tel: 01434 600 599

 

  • Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust

24-hour access to mental health care, advice and support

www.cntw.nhs.uk/needhelpnow Tel: 0303 123 1146 (for all ages in need of an urgent response)

  • Cygnus

Mental health and wellbeing services Bereavement and generalised mental health counselling

www.cygnussupport.com Tel: 01670 853 977

  • BPAS (British Pregnancy Advisory Service)

Pregnancy termination and counselling

www.bpas.org Tel: 03457 30 40 30

  • Barnardo’s

Services for children and young people:

  • Sexual abuse counselling
  • Bereavement counselling
  • Trailblazer group work

www.barnardos.org.uk Tel: 0191 212 0237

 

 FAQ’s

 

Is the GP Surgery still open ?

 

Yes, we remain open.  BUT we ask that you DO NOT attend the surgery unless you have been advised to do so by a member of our team.  Appointments are being done via telephone and when helpful GPs and Practice Nurses can use video consulting. When you request a GP or Practice Nurse telephone appointment, we cannot specify which doctor or nurse will ring you or give an exact time due to workload demands but will specify which day the call will take place.  Please help us by ensuring we have your up-to-date telephone number and keep your phone to hand to take the call. Please bear with us if the phones are busy or there are delays in returning your calls.

 

Should I come to the Surgery ?

 

Please do not arrive unannounced as you will not be seen.  While most people with COVID-19 will have symptoms such as new persistent cough or a fever, some people will have no symptoms at all but will be spreading the virus. We are trying to ensure our team can stay healthy so we can help our patients.  We also do not want to inadvertently pass on the virus to our patients.  So we have to weigh the risks to you and us of face to face consultations, versus the risk of you not being seen face to face.  The fewer patients we see, the less chance there is of the virus being passed on. However, there are some patients who have to be seen for regular blood tests and immunisations, the Doctor or Nurse will assess the need for this. 

 

What about ordering medication ?

 

We are processing medication requests as normal.  All of the pharmacies are experiencing very high workloads and are asking for longer to have your medication ready for collection/delivery.   Please note paper prescriptions requests usually handed in at the surgery should be left in the letter box on the outside of the building. If you would like to order your prescription over the telephone, call 01434 320077, select option 2 and leave your request on the messaging facility. 

 

How can patients help ?

 

Currently the best and most important thing you can do is STAY AT ALERT, STAY SAFE. If you do have to attend the surgery, for example for an appointment such as a blood test, please keep your visit brief, use the hand sanitiser provided in the waiting room and stay 2 meters apart from other patients and staff where possible.   Even if you have a booked appointment do not attend if you have symptoms of COVID-19.  Please help us to stay healthy so we can help others.

 

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