The current Coronavirus situation is unprecedented.
We would like to give you some information and ask you to help us in these difficult times.
Let us make no mistake. General Practice is a front line service.
Whilst our hospitals may see the most severe cases, general practice will see the vast majority of patients with Coronavirus. Of course we hope that mild cases will remain at home, but the assessment of moderate and severe cases will need to be done by GPs.
Whilst hospitals delay routine operations and care of some patients to improve capacity, these very patients will need to be looked after in general practice for longer.
We will also have to try and continue to provide our usual service as best we can.
The burden of work is going to be extraordinary.
We also have a duty of care to minimise the risk of infection to those patients we are looking after who may not have Coronavirus but are seeing us for other conditions.
We also have a duty of care to try and keep the practice open and operating in an environment where our staff or doctors may have to self-isolate for up to 2 weeks and not be available to see patients directly.
All of this means that we are going to have to make some significant changes to the way that we work. We need to be able to be both careful and reactive to the situation on a day by day basis.
What the practice will be doing, and how it will effect you.
Over the next few days we will be moving towards a total triage system.
This means that all requests for appointments will be passed to a doctor for assessment. You may find that we deal with your condition by phone, by video link, or we may ask you to come to the surgery. We will not be offering anything other than the same day appointments, and we will have to be quite strict about timings. This is to make sure that we do not mix high risk patients with low risk patients in the surgery.
How can you help us?
- Do you have a condition that you can self-treat? If you do then please try to do this with advice from either your pharmacist or from NHS online
- Do you simply need general advice? If you do, can you call 111 for this?
- If you feel you need to see a doctor then please try to call in the morning rather than the afternoon so that we can plan our day accordingly.
- Do you have access to online services in order to order your prescriptions? If not then you can download the NHS App. You do not need to come to the surgery to register to use this.
- Have you nominated a pharmacy for the transmission of electronic prescriptions? This will prevent the need for either you or pharmacy staff from coming to the surgery. The nomination of a pharmacy can be done via your online app or speaking to your pharmacist or GP surgery directly.
We hope that you will help us under these unusual circumstances. Please share this email with other patients of our practice.
The Doctors & staff,
Waterfont & Solent Surgery