KEY MESSAGES FOR THE PUBLIC
Like many of you we remain concerned that social distancing and self-isolation are not being strongly adhered to by all. We are also concerned by the very sharp increase in cases and state of emergency in London. It is time to ramp up the public messaging to increase preparedness for what is coming. We will be on Radio Derby at breakfast time again this week and will be approaching the BBC with the following messages which we would be grateful if you would reinforce:
- SOCAL DISTANCING will only work if we all do it and it is the only way to reduce impact on our NHS
- Please ensure your children are not hanging around with one another when not at school.
- Please do not congregate in houses as pubs/clubs are closed.
- If outside, please maintain 2m separation and avoid busy areas such as popular parks.
- The NHS is getting increasingly stretched. YOU CAN HELP
- Only use General Practice/A+E if you need to. If you need to we are here and are managing the vast majority of problems by phone. Do not ring your practice if you think you are in the extremely vulnerable group unless you haven’t received a letter by Sunday 29th March.
- Where possible try self-care first.
- Please be aware that routine referrals to hospital have been suspended. The only exception is CANCER SERVICES where Two Week Wait Cancer referrals can still be made
- DO NOT over-order medications, or order medications that you wouldn’t normally have. We have seen Social Media posts about ‘Rescue Medication’ for chronic lung complaints; these are used in specific circumstances and are not for all. We have sufficient medications at this time but inappropriate use will affect the supply chain.
A huge thanks to the vast majority of patients who are adhering to government advice, understanding of these changes and self-caring
To protect yourself and others, do not go to a GP, pharmacy or hospital
ADVICE FROM 111
To find out what to do if:
*you think you have symptoms
*you might have been exposed to the virus when travelling
We’ll ask you a few questions and tell you what to do next
Follow the link below to access the patient self screening assessment
Latest Government Guidance
Stay at home: guidance for households with possible coronavirus (COVID-19) infection
Coronavirus Update 3.3.2020
For general information on coronavirus, please visit https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
For patients concerned that they may have coronavirus or may have come into contact with someone who has, the NHS 111 online service has created coronavirus pages that tell patients what they should do based on their particular circumstances. These can be accessed at: https://111.nhs.uk/service/covid-19
The NHS in Derbyshire and Public Health England (PHE) are extremely well prepared for outbreaks of new infectious diseases. The NHS has put in place measures to ensure the safety of all patients and NHS staff while also ensuring services are available to the public as normal.
The risk to the general public is moderate. If you have arrived back to the UK from mainland China, Thailand, Japan, Republic of Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia or Macau within 14 days, follow the specific advice for returning travellers.
Anyone who has travelled to China or places listed above in the last 14 days and develops symptoms of cough or fever or shortness of breath, should immediately:
- Stay indoors and avoid contact with other people as you would with the flu
- Call NHS 111 to inform them of your recent travel to the country.
Information for the public is available at gov.uk/coronavirus.
Like the common cold, coronavirus infection usually occurs through close contact with a person with novel coronavirus via cough and sneezes or hand contact. A person can also be infected by touching contaminated surfaces if they do not wash their hands.
The risk of being in close contact with a person with coronavirus or contaminated surfaces is very low at the current time, as members of the public who have visited Wuhan, Hubei province, China are currently in isolation.
Testing of suspected coronavirus cases is carried out in line with strict regulations. This means that suspected cases are kept in isolation, away from public areas of the GP practice and returned home also in isolation. Any equipment that come into contact with suspected cases are thoroughly cleaned as appropriate. Specific guidance has also been shared with NHS staff to help safeguard them and others. Patients can be reassured that their safety is a top priority, and are encouraged to attend all appointments as usual.
Everyone is being reminded to follow Public Health England advice to:
•Always carry tissues with you and use them to catch your cough or sneeze. Then bin the tissue, and wash your hands, or use a sanitiser gel.
• Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after using public transport. Use a sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
• Avoid close contact with people who are unwell.
You can find the latest information and advice from Public Health England at www.gov.uk/coronavirus.
Patient Participation Group
Our current Patient Participation Group (PPG) meets throughout the year and enables patients’ voices to be heard and acted upon. It offers an opportunity to meet regularly and provided a two-way communication between patients and practice staff, helping the Practice to improve services to patients.
Join our PPG
If you would like to contribute to improving the services we offer our patients please consider joining the Patient Participation Group. New members are welcome at any time. You do not need to be able to attend any of the meetings we hold, you can be a ‘virtual’ group member. As a virtual member you will still receive the meeting papers and you can provide your feedback outside of the meetings.
If you are interested in joining the group either as a virtual member or to attend the meetings we would like to hear from you.
Please contact Rebecca Liszka for further details
IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR PATIENTS TAKING
GABAPENTIN OR PREGABALIN
From the 1st April 2019 gabapentin and pregabalin will be reclassified as Schedule 3 Controlled Drugs
What does this mean for me?
Prescriptions for controlled drugs should be written for a maximum of one month’s supply.
Controlled drugs cannot currently be sent to Community Pharmacies electronically so a paper prescription may need to be printed for gabapentin or pregabalin. Other medication that is not a controlled drug can still be sent to the pharmacy electronically. When collecting your medication from the pharmacy, please check that you have everything you ordered as the pharmacy may now receive your prescriptions separately.
Prescriptions for controlled drugs must be presented at the pharmacy within 28 days of the prescription date.
Gabapentin or pregabalin will no longer be allowed as repeat dispensing (batch prescriptions) and will need to be issued monthly from your GP surgery as a paper prescription. Other medication can continue to be supplied as repeat dispensing if you wish.
**Depending on practice policy you may wish to include the following:**
If you collect your prescription from the surgery you will be asked to sign for it.
Due to controlled drug regulations, if you lose your prescription for gabapentin or pregabalin we may not be able to issue a replacement.
Castle St Re-Opening Event
On Thursday 24 January we held a small re-opening event with colleagues, patients and volunteers to celebrate the successful completion of the surgery re-fit. Prem Singh, the Trust's Chairman, gave a touching speech acknowledging the accomplishment. Prem and Dr Alex Carberry then did an honorary ribbon cutting.
New Carers' Support Group
We are looking to start a new Carers' Support Group. Please contact the reception team to register your interest in participating with the group.
Latest Practice Newsletter
Our Winter 2018 Practice Newsletter is available here.
Get Well, Keep Well
Of course we’re not just here for when you are unwell. Our team of healthcare professionals and back-up staff offer a number of clinics and services to promote good health and wellbeing whatever your medical condition.
Early Morning Non-Urgent Appointments
We offer early morning non-urgent GP appointments every Monday and Tuesday between 7:30 and 8:30am specifically for workers and those who find it difficult to attend the practice during core hours. These appointments are also available to book online.
As a patient at Castle St you may be able to use the extended access appointments available at Barlborough Medical Practice (at Barlborough and Renishaw), The Springs Medical Partnership, or Welbeck Road Health Centre. Information about why extended access is happening and what it should mean for patients is available here: https://www.england.nhs.uk/gp/gpfv/redesign/improving-access/
Please note: you will still remain registered with Castle St and your existing access will not be affected. This service is available in addition to the current GP Practice services provided.
The 3 Practices providing this service on behalf of Castle St and other participating practices are:
•The Springs Medical Partnership: Staying open until 8pm Mon and Tues.
•Barlborough Medical Practice: Open Saturday Morning 8am – 11.30am.
•Welbeck Road Bolsover: Staying open until 8pm Wed and Thurs.
•Friday evening appointments (until 8pm) will be provided on a rolling basis.
•DHU: Will provide the service on Sundays and Bank Holidays.
Please note that extended access appointments are available by pre-booking only - this can be done via the reception team at Castle St.
Please be assured that the 9 Practices have signed an Information Sharing Agreement which governs the appropriate use of patient data in order to provide Health Care Services. Existing confidentiality clauses ensure that all employees access data appropriately and in a fully audited manner.