Avisford Medical Group - Practice News
COVID Measures in Practice
We are aware of some negative publicity around our practice doors being “closed”. We would like to clarify that practice remains open to all of our patients, but that we are currently asking for patients to call us before coming to the practice and seek confirmation if attendance in person is necessary.
All GP appointments will continue to initially be over the phone and after a clinical need for physical examination is confirmed, we will then book a face-to-face appointment for you. Triage over the phone allows us to minimise footfall into the practice so that both patients and practice staff can be protected from unnecessary exposure to COVID 19, and so that we can then continue to provide services for everyone.
In last few days, two of our GPs and one Health Care Assistant have had to self-isolate following testing positive for COVID 19. The result of this, is that hundreds of potential appointments were lost as a consequence. As you will all be aware, the threat from COVID 19 has not gone away. The NHS, including General Practice, remains very much under pressure.
We would request understanding, and please accept that when contacting the practice for an appointment, initial telephone consultation will be offered in most cases. As mentioned above, if there is a clinical need for a face-to-face appointment, this will then be arrange by the GP while on the phone with an appropriate clinician on a day that is suitable to the patient. This may not be on same day and in some cases it might be appropriate to arrange blood test etc. before making further decisions.
We continue to provide 100s of appointments on the phone and face-to-face on daily basis and the practice is continuously trying to improve access to practice for all our patients. We have been and remain open for appointments.
When attending practice for a face-to-face appointment, we would like to remind patients that wearing a mask remains mandatory in Healthcare settings unless you are exempt. You might be asked by a member of our team the reason for exemption if this is not immediately clear.
Blood Testing Tubes Shortage
Becton Dickinson, provider of NHS blood test tubes, alerted NHS England about shortage of blood tube supplies on 26th Aug.
To safely manage demand for these remaining test tubes, NHS England and NHS Improvement issued urgent guidance, recommending the following measures should be applied across the NHS in England, including GP surgeries. This involved instructions to "all primary care and community testing must be halted until 17 September 2021, except for clinically urgent testing"
We appreciate that this temporary position has been frustrating for patients and services alike.
Today NHS England has published following update -
"Working closely with DHSC, MHRA and NHS Supply Chain, we have secured 9 million BD tubes from US stocks. MHRA has approved these for use in the UK by way of an exceptional use authorisation (EUA).
BD has now completed improvements to its manufacturing facility in the UK and expects its production capacity to recover through September.
These developments, alongside the efforts of NHS staff to manage use, mean that the supply situation is no longer as constrained as when we wrote to you on 26 August. However, the issue is not yet completely resolved."
Locally we have been reassured by St Richard's hospital of continued supply to allow routine work to resume which has now been started at both Middleton and Yapton Surgery. Further updates will be issues if there was any change in position. All patients who were affected by this situaiton are now requested to come forward and arrange your tests via practice reception.
Thank you for your understanding and patience.