Changes to GP Services Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic
With effect from Thursday 26 March, we will be seeing patients in only two of our seven surgeries. This is a temporary measure taken as a direct result of the pressures on the NHS due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. It means that only the following surgeries will be open to the public for appointments and collection of prescriptions:
- Hedon Group Practice, Hedon
- St Nicholas’ Surgery, Withernsea
Normal opening hours will apply at these two locations.
This is not a decision which has been taken lightly. Having looked at all the options available, the practice has determined that it is essential to keep GP services running within Holderness during this crisis. The whole NHS is under immense pressure and general practice is no exception. Close to 20% of the practice workforce is already absent due to self-isolation and shielding measures and this number is likely to rise further. Closing sites in a planned way will allow the practice to prioritise patient care. It will ensure that we can offer as many phone consultations as possible with the workforce we have and that any face-to-face appointments which are absolutely essential are done in the safest environment possible for our patients.
We recognise the impact that this will have on patients and will do everything possible to minimise problems. We are asking patients to help by following some simple guidelines:
Please DO NOT:
- Come into the surgery buildings unless asked to do so by a member of staff or to collect a prescription
- Adhere to the queue management and social distancing measures we have put in place
- Follow any instructions given to you by staff. For some patients asked to visit the surgery, this may include waiting outside the building until collected by a doctor.
- Register for online access if you don’t already have it. (Please do this through the NHS App to avoid having to come into the surgery.)
- Use your online access (Patient Access or NHS App) to order your medication and book any appointments you may need.
- Consider using our online consultation service as an alternative to ringing the practice. You can access this from the homepage of the practice website at www.holdernesshealth.nhs.uk –click ‘Request an Online Consultation’. Requests are reviewed by a clinician who will contact you by phone if required.
- Follow our Facebook Page – we will post updates and important information there.
- Obtain an isolation note via the online service at: https://111.nhs.uk/isolation-note if you have been told to stay at home because of coronavirus and you need a note for your employer.
With respect to ordering and collecting prescriptions, the following information applies:
- If you normally order your prescription directly with the practice, please continue to do so. Place your order online if possible. If you are unable to order online, please drop your repeat order slip in one of the Prescription Post Boxes which have now been installed outside all seven surgeries.
- If your local pharmacy normally places your repeat prescription order for you, this can continue as usual.
- Please order all medication on your usual cycle. We can only issue your regular amount of medication.
Prescription post boxes will be emptied at 12 noon on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in Keyingham and Patrington and daily in Hedon, Roos and Withernsea. Prescriptions will be ready 7 days after collection from the box – please ensure you plan accordingly.
We are working on a way to allow parents online access to order medication on behalf of their children without having to come into the practice. This should be available within the next week.
If you are able to do so and are not self-isolating/shielding, you should collect your prescription from one of the two sites which remain open.
- Orders placed at Patrington and Roos can be collected from Withernsea
- Orders placed at Keyingham or Church View Surgery in Hedon can be collected from Hedon Group Practice in Hedon
We are looking to increase our delivery capacity so that we can ensure medication reaches the most vulnerable patients. Our thanks go to members of the community who have already stepped forward to offer us assistance with this. However, we do not have the resources to deliver to everyone. We are therefore asking patients to consider the following checklist before contacting the surgery to request delivery of medication:
- Ask a friend or family member who not isolating and not shielded/at risk to collect it for you (please follow queue management signage and barriers)
- Look for voluntary community collections that may have been advertised via post or social media e.g. the Rooster are arranging collections/deliveries in Roos
- Look for community pharmacy or government initiatives
- If 1, 2 or 3 is not available to you, please contact the surgery. We will strive to help but are only able to deliver the most essential medications on the minimum number of occasions.
The practice is keen to reassure all patients that our priority is to maintain safe patient care and is grateful for the huge public support for the NHS at this time.