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IMPORTANT PATENT INFORMATION

Updated: 18.05.2022

The Queen's Platinum Jubilee

The surgery will be closed on Thursday 2 and Friday 3 June 2022. If you require medical advice or support when the practice is closed, please use the following link to access care and advice:  www.stopthinkchoose.co.uk.  The link has been specifically designed to help explain the healthcare options available to patients and contains information on using a pharmacy, NHS 111, urgent treatment centres.

Local pharmacies open on Thursday 02.06.2022 and Friday 03.06.2022 are as follows:

Deal Boots the Chemists 39 High Street, Deal, CT14 6EL 01304 374237 between 10:00-16:00

Dover Tesco Pharmacy White Cliffs Business Park. Honeywood Close, Whitfield, Dover, CT16 3PS 01304 581000 between 09:00-13:00

COVID Update

Please help us to help you by using eConsult wherever possible, this will help us to better manage the increasing demand for appointments by ensuring you are given an appointment with the most appropriate clinician.

If you have COVID symptoms or have been in contact with some with COVID, please inform the receptionist when booking your appointment, or document if sending you request via eConsult.  This will help us to prevent spread to our staff and enable us to maintain services for our patients

A short patient guide on getting the right NHS help in Kent and Medway is now available to download. This Stop Think Choose campaign has been designed to help relieve pressure across the healthcare system by supporting patients to make the best choice about healthcare. It contains information on using a pharmacy, NHS 111, urgent treatment centres, and signposts to the dedicated web page: www.stopthinkchoose.co.uk

Infection prevention control guidelines remain in place

The highest priority for the NHS remains the safety of staff, patients and visitors.

While COVID restrictions have end in many settings in England, everyone accessing or visiting healthcare settings must continue to wear a face covering (unless they are exempt) and follow social distancing rules.

Public Health England’s infection prevention control guidelines and hospital visiting guidance are therefore set to remain in place for all staff and visitors and across all health services including hospitals, GP practices, dentists, optometrists and pharmacies to ensure patients and staff are protected.

Read the guidance provided by Kent & Medway CCG at: https://www.kentandmedwayccg.nhs.uk/your-health/coronavirus/Face-coverings-still-needed-in-healthcare-settings

General Practice is Open:

If you feel unwell or have any worrying symptoms, such as potential signs of cancer, you should seek medical assistance.

GP practices are open and here to help however, because of the need to minimise the amount of face to face contact to keep you safe, most appointments in the first instance are carried out over the phone or via video. In an emergency, for example if you think you might be having a heart attack or stroke, call 999. 

If a face to face appointment is needed you will still be seen in person by a clinician.

Telephone appointments are not suitable for everyone– if you need a physical examination or blood test, for example. You and your clinician can reach a decision on what is best for you.

If you have Coronavirus symptoms you should follow the current COVID guidance and call NHS 111 if your symptoms worsen. You should arrange to take a test by visiting www.nhs.uk or by calling 119 but do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.

What to do when the surgery is closed:

If you require medical advice or support, please use the following link to access care and advice:  www.stopthinkchoose.co.uk.  The link has been designed to help explain the healthcare options available to patients.

Unwanted mobility equipment drop-off points

People with mobility equipment they no longer need are being urged to return them to new, dedicated drop-off points at hospitals in Ashford, Canterbury and Margate.

This includes equipment loaned by the NHS or Kent County Council through NRS Healthcare, such as commodes, walking frames, raised toilet seats, shower chairs, free-standing toilet frames, perching stools, chair raisers, kitchen trolleys and wheeled walkers. Crutches can also be returned. Drop-off point details are online.

Please don’t abuse our staff: It’s not in a day’s work

Sadly, NHS staff across Kent and Medway are reporting more and more incidents of the abuse they face when they go into work.


In an open letter signed by chief executives from all NHS trusts in Kent and Medway, people are asked to be kind to NHS staff.

The letter says: “The overwhelming majority of our patients, clients and service users are respectful of the years of training and the skills healthcare professionals have developed so they can care for others.

 

People understand the caring and compassionate nature that makes someone want to work for the NHS; whether they are clinicians or in support roles.

 

It goes on to talk about the commitment to high-quality care all NHS partners have and that while it is a small minority of people who behave this way towards NHS staff, the consequences can be far reaching.

We understand the frustration when you may have to wait a little longer at a clinic appointment, urgent treatment centre or emergency department, or when you may not be able to get through to a GP practice on the phone.

 

“Some people don’t understand why we are still asking them to wear masks in healthcare settings when they don’t wish to do so. We also know others don’t wish to participate in the Covid-19 vaccination programme. The second is a personal choice; the first keeps our staff safe.

 

“However, what we cannot accept is abuse – verbal or physical – towards our workforce. They are there to help, not be abused.’’

 

You can find out more at: https://www.kentandmedwayccg.nhs.uk/news-and-events/news/nhs-staff-deserve-respect

Dr S J T Williams and Partners

 

COMMUNITY PHARMACY CONSULTATON SERVICE

The Community Pharmacy Consultation Service is designed to improve access for patients with minor conditions, which can easily be treated by a trained pharmacist.  All local pharmacists in Deal and Sandwich are signed up to this service.

If a patient contacts the surgery for an appointment with a condition that can be treated by a pharmacist, they will be offered referral to their chosen pharmacy.  On receipt of the referral, the pharmacist will contact you to discuss your referral.  This will normally be within 24 hours of receiving the referral.

Pharmacists are trained to provide advice/guidance or treatment for many minor ailments.  Most minor ailment treatments require medication which is not routinely prescribed in general practice, so going to your pharmacist will mean you will get seen and treated more quickly than waiting for an appointment to see a member of the practice team.  If you do need to see a member of the practice team after speaking to the pharmacist, they will let us know.

We have provided a link to an information video about the service below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DB46_1Lhd-Q&feature=youtu.be


“Getting in touch with us

We are aware there are significant problems getting through to us on the phone. We are sorry this is the case and would like to explain a little about why that is.

Many GP surgeries across the country are in a similar position. We understand how frustrating it can be for it to take longer than normal.

We would like to reassure you we are working hard to resolve the situation.

There are things that are challenging us: 

  • There has been an unprecedented post-lockdown increase in demand. Part of this is because many of our patients have been managing health issues themselves rather than contacting their doctor over the last year and as confidence in general is returning, patients are now quite rightly contacting us.
  • Some hospital procedures and appointments have been necessarily delayed and now patients want to know when they are going to be seen.
  • We have had to change the way we work to keep things safe for our patients and our staff.

What can you do to help?

  • Choose well – can the pharmacy help your symptoms? Call 111 if you are unsure which sort of treatment you need. You can also go online 111.nhs.uk
  • Download the NHS app. You can use this to order repeat prescriptions and view your medical records.
  • Use our eConsult online consultation system, if you are able to this will help you get in touch more quickly and provide us with the information we need to make sure you are seen by the most appropriate clinician.
  • Cancel appointments you no longer need, as these can then be used to ensure someone else is seen.
  • Contact the hospital to ask when you can expect your appointment or procedure to be rescheduled, we have no control over hospital waiting lists or appointment systems.
  • Continue to wear your face mask when coming to the surgery, maintain social distancing and use the hand sanitiser provided to keep everyone safe.

It’s useful to remember our teams are on the front line and see both the best and the worst of us all. They work incredibly hard to help patients navigate the system, but may not be able to offer you exactly what you want at all times.

Please be patient and courteous, they want to find the best solution as much as you do.

We are grateful for your understanding.

GP Partners and Practice Manager.”

 

Checking vaccination status with the NHS App

People who want to travel abroad can now use the NHS App to show they have been fully vaccinated.

A full course is currently two doses of any approved Covid-19 vaccine. Vaccine status will be available from the NHS App which can be downloaded from app stores, with more information available on gov.uk. The CCG has also published information on its website


If patients are unable to access this service, and they have had two vaccines, they can request a paper letter from the NHS by calling 119. Patients should only call 119 if they have had their second dose more than five working days beforehand. It may take seven working days for the letter to arrive.

Government and NHS information has made it clear that GP practices cannot provide proof of vaccination status so patients should not contact them.

SOCIAL PRESCRIBING INFORMATION FOR DEAL AND SANDWICH PATIENTS

https://www.facebook.com/Deal-Sandwich-PCN-Social-Prescribing-108273851137397/

 

Health News from the BBC and the NHS

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