Covid-19 Information – moving forward

Posted by: Mark - Posted on:

As you will realise from the news there has been a number of changes in how we are all expected to work and live during the current crisis. This information is up to date as of 7th June 2020.

As an employer we are bound, like all employers, by health and safety regulations and under Track and Trace rules we could be closed (temporarily) if we fail to abide the guidelines. We are endeavouring to manage these rules while continuing to provide a safe and good quality service to you, our patients.

We have risk assessed both buildings that we currently operate out of. The results of both risk assessments are as below:

Gardiner Crescent : With alteration to staffing arrangements and other matters we can operate a service for all patients registered with us.

Lavender Centre: At this point in time, it is NOT possible for any services run by us to operate out of our suite there under the current guidance. The risks to staff and patients cannot be mitigated at this point in time.

All these measures are being constantly reviewed and will be updated as and when necessary.

What we are doing:

* We are doubling the amount of phone lines we have coming into Gardiner Crescent. This may take time to put into place as it requires some work from BT. The best phone number to reach us is 0191 387 3558. This line is open from 8.30am -12.30pm and from 1.30pm to 6pm.

* Our doors are locked at Gardiner Crescent. We have placed a post box on the wall outside for scripts etc to be placed in. Additionally we are installing an intercom if you need to speak to a receptionist outside.

* All staff wear appropriate PPE when having any patient contact at all.

* We have a wall dispenser before the clinical rooms for hand sanitiser.

* We have set a regular cleaning schedule for staff to sanitise the building and workspaces 3x during the work day with an extra clean during the hour we are closed at lunchtime.

* We operate under safe working distances so all staff are spaced 2m apart.

* We have a maximum working staff number in the building – some members of staff will work from home because of this.

* We are using new methods of consultation and communication to ensure that our service to you remains safe and high quality.

What we are asking you to do

* We are NOT accepting prescription requests over the phone and all will be refused – we have limited phone capacity and limited staff capacity due to social distancing measures. All scripts need to be in writing or via online services.

* Expect to be called back by a clinician so that your problem can be discussed . This call will be made usually between 9-11.30am and 3-5.30pm. The clinician will prioritise calls on clinical need so therefore please accept that our admin team will not be able to give you a specific time. It is your responsibility to ensure we have the correct contact number for yourself. We will only try once – if you fail to pick up, we will not call back, if you see you have missed our call, please call back and we will try to put you through.

* Try and use online services such as email, AccuRX or SystemOne services to send messages, request sick notes et cetera.

* If you think you have a UTI please use e consult or ask for a phone consultation before you ‘drop by’ for a sample bottle.

* Sick notes will be issued but will only be mailed or emailed out. There will be no collection from the building. If necessary and urgent we will deliver it to you.

* Do not attend the surgery unless you have a booked appointment or have a pre-arranged meeting.

* Wear a face covering on entry to building. This must be brought by you as we have limited PPE and sufficient only for staff use.

* If you have an appointment, please only attend just before your appointment time. You will be collected from the door by a clinician who is dressed in PPE. There is NO access to the waiting room at this time.

* Not attend the surgery at all if you have any symptoms of Covid-19 infection or have a positive test.