Grove Medical Centre information
The Grove Medical Centre, Sherborne has published the following messages:
We are busy in the surgery planning this years’ flu clinics. Things will be different, all clinics will be appointment based, with everything having to be social distanced and extra time for cleaning and PPE for the clinicians between every patient. We have done careful planning to work out how many patients we can safely have in the building at one time. We will be recalling patients in due course so please do not contact the surgery to ask if you can book in - wait for us to contact you. We have just under 4000 over 65’s to contact to start with, as these are the first vaccines to arrive. We have allocated staff hours to complete this work in a variety of methods – text, email and phone. So please keep an eye out for a message or phone call from us with how to book in. We are looking forward to a safely run flu clinic season.
We have noticed a large increase over the last couple of weeks of patients not attending for their appointments. In the last week we have lost 24 nursing team appointments which equated to 7 hours and 20 minutes of clinical time. Our appointments are really stretched to the limit at the moment due to increased time needed due to extra precautions around Covid-19. Please can you let us know if you cannot attend your appointment within a reasonable time, so we can offer it to another patient who is waiting for one
We have been advised that as per guidance for hospitals we also ask anybody entering the building to wear a face covering, even if you are only collecting a prescription. This does not need to be a medical grade mask. Exceptions are children under 11, those with disabilities or breathing difficulties, or if you are accompanying someone who relies on lip reading. Thank you for your continued understanding.
From Monday 1st June 2020 the advice for ‘Shielding’ patients has now been updated to allow a little more freedom. However, remember that you are still classed as vulnerable so you should exercise caution:
1. You should strictly avoid contact with anyone who is displaying symptoms of COVID-19 (a new continuous cough, a high temperature, or a loss of, or change in their sense of taste or smell).
2. You may now spend some time outdoors with members of your own household. If you live alone, you can spend time outdoors with one person from another household (ideally the same person each time) remembering to keep 2 metres apart.
3. Remember to stay alert when leaving home: washing your hands regularly, maintaining social distance and avoiding gatherings of any size.
4. You should not attend any gatherings, including gatherings of friends and families in private spaces, for example, parties, weddings and religious services. Nor should you enter other buildings, households, or enclosed spaces.
The Government is currently advising people to shield until 30 June 2020 and is regularly monitoring this position. See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-outbreak-faqs-what-you-can-and-cant-do/coronavirus-outbreak-faqs-what-you-can-and-cant-do?fbclid=IwAR2uVEXHHl0yi9FYOf4yCSfkuvFYq5rRTbA-v3ddcfBk5tY2zgC37hHBviY#vulnerable-groups-shielding-70-year-olds-and-over-and-care-homes
Patients have asked us whether they are required to wear a face mask when visiting The Grove Medical Centre in Sherborne.
The following is the official response from the Medical Centre:
“If you are just coming to collect a prescription and are going no further than the foyer then you do not need to wear a mask. If you are having an appointment face to face with a doctor or nurse then you will be asked to wear a face covering such as scarf or a mask during your consultation and whilst in the waiting rooms. This is because it is impossible to socially distance during a face to face consultation and hard to manage social distancing in our waiting rooms as they get busier. All clinical staff wear full PPE during consultations and clean the room down between each patient but when not seeing patients staff should not wear it around the building. Our non-clinical staff are not required to wear PPE. We ask please that if possible you bring your own face covering to help protect others and to protect the resources of the NHS. Getting PPE to protect our staff can still be a challenge. The cost of a standard medical grade mask has increased by over 120% since February. We also ask that you please don't drop your used masks around the surgery car park (or anywhere else). It is not pleasant for the staff to collect these up. Thank you for your help in keeping everyone safe during these times. Covid is still very much out there. Stay safe everyone”.
**Patient Notice** We have essential work taking place in our foyer for the rest of this week. We apologise for any inconvenience that this may cause but ask that if you are attending the surgery for an appointment could you please enter the building through the signposted side door. Many thanks for your assistance whilst this work takes place. - 10.06.20 Work now completed.
**REQUEST TO PATIENTS** Due to our limited supplies of face masks, if you have an appointment at the surgery and have your own mask or facial covering (doesn't need to be medical grade) we would really appreciate it if you could please wear it to save our supplies. We would also ask that if you are able, please attend the surgery on your own. Thank you so much!
In order to support our NHS colleagues, The Grove Medical Centre will be open Good Friday and Easter Monday 08:00 to 18:30 as a usual working day. Please call us if you need us.
‼Coronavirus (COVID-19) update – texts sent by the government to patients classed as “at risk”‼
**If you have received one of these texts and been asked to contact your GP practice please read the below information – our staff can give you no further information than what we have put down here**
We are aware of patients who have started receiving letters and/or texts advising them to self-isolate for the next 12 weeks. These letters/texts are being been sent to patients who are at “increased risk" of developing complications if they were to get Covid-19.
The information which has been released to GP practices by the Government is that the following patients are in the "increased risk" category and should be following the social distancing advice.
🔹aged 70 or older (regardless of medical conditions)
🔹under 70 with an underlying health condition listed below (ie anyone instructed to get a flu jab as an adult each year on medical grounds):
🔸chronic (long-term) respiratory diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema or bronchitis
🔸chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
🔸chronic kidney disease
🔸chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
🔸chronic neurological conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), a learning disability or cerebral palsy
🔸problems with your spleen – for example, sickle cell disease or if you have had your spleen removed
🔸a weakened immune system as the result of conditions such as HIV and AIDS, or medicines such as steroid tablets or chemotherapy
🔸being seriously overweight (a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or above)
🔹those who are pregnant
Some patients in the above categories may find themselves being upgraded into the higher risk category for shielding (extremely vulnerable) however the guidance on how these patients will be identified, & who will be contacting them has not yet been released and we are expecting to receive this information within the next 14 days.
We have been advised that there are 3 phases to the letters/texts for shielding (extremely vulnerable) being sent out and they are half way through phase 2. This means not having a letter yet does not necessarily mean you won’t get one.
We are expecting all patients who will receive a letter to have had one within the next 3-4 weeks.
We are sorry we cannot be more specific at this time as we don’t have the information either. In the meantime if you are in the above at risk group please do continue to follow the government advice regarding social distancing and shielding.
Once we receive further information we will post an update.