Service Update – Wednesday 15th June 2022
- Posted by Tom Finan
- On 15th June 2022
We are currently experiencing a high level of sickness in our clinical and non-clinical teams which means that we have fewer appointments to offer and fewer colleagues to answer phones at reception and in our contact centre.
We know that people are waiting far longer to access our service than we would like and although we are doing our best to get cover where we can, our options are limited due to a lack of available clinicians.
Where appropriate, we would ask people to consider making make use of the alternative services that are available to everyone as part of the NHS; these are services that you can access without needing to speak to your GP first:
www.NHS.uk – The NHS website has lots of information about how to manage a wide range of conditions. You can find advice and guidance about alternative services on offer and search for services close to you.
Community pharmacy – for help with a wide range of minor ailments, your community Pharmacist can offer over the counter treatments to help you to manage your symptoms
NHS 111 – fast, easy and free, if you need more urgent advice you can contact NHS 111 online or by calling 111. If they feel you need access to a clinician, they will direct you to the most appropriate service for your needs.
Urgent Treatment Centre – There are two Urgent Treatment Centres operating locally for when you feel something is urgent but not an emergency, these are:
- Sandwell Urgent Treatment Centre, Sandwell Hospital, Lyndon, West Bromwich B71 4HJ
- Dudley Urgent Treatment Centre, Russells Hall Hospital, Pensnett Road, Dudley, DY1 2HQ
Finally, we know that people are frustrated and tempers can fray however we would ask you to please continue to treat our team with the respect that you would ask in return – they are here to help you and are doing their best in extremely difficult circumstances.
We are open
- The practice is currently open Monday – Friday 8:00am – 8:00pm, Saturday 8:30am – 11:30am, Sunday 09:00am – 11:00am
- Whiteheath Medical Centre is no longer being used for COVID-19 vaccinations and is now open to the public.
- Mace Street Clinic is currently open mornings only Monday – Friday 08:00am – 1:00pm
- Your first point of contact with a clinician will be on the telephone and/or a video consultation if appropriate – if you need to be seen face to face, then they will arrange for you to be seen at one of our sites; this may be different to the site you usually attend.
- If it is appropriate for you to be seen at home, we will arrange to visit you
- Prescriptions – we will continue to process prescriptions as quickly as possible but please allow 72 hours (3 days) from the date of ordering before collecting your medication. We would encourage everyone to have their prescriptions delivered directly to their chosen pharmacy electronically.
- Ordering prescriptions – There are a few options for you to use. 1) if you’re registered to use online services this is the best way to order your medication at your convenience. If you aren’t currently registered but would like to sign-up, please contact us directly and we can sort it out for you. 2) you can ask your pharmacy to order them for you. 3) You can drop your prescription requests into one of the secure boxes at our practice
- Sick notes to cover self-isolation – These are known as ‘Isolation notes’. If you need to stay at home because of coronavirus and you need a note for your employer, there is an online service you can use: https://111.nhs.uk/isolation-note
Call us or go online
We recommend that you avoid visiting our practice sites if you can, however you will not be refused entry. As per guidance for NHS buildings, we continue to screen visitors and you will be required to wear a mask unless otherwise exempt:
- Our telephone lines are open Monday – Friday 8:00am – 8:00pm, Saturday 08:30am – 11:30am, Sunday 09:00am – 11:00am until further notice
- If you aren’t sure if a particular service/clinic is running, then please get in touch
- Register for online services to book appointments; order your medication; access information from your record; send a direct message to the practice- if you aren’t using online services but would like to register, we can do this with you over the phone
- Do you have a non-urgent medical problem or need help with a administrative issue? Submit your request to us via our online form here simply answer a few short questions and we will get back to you – please do not use this form for urgent or emergency requests
COVID-19 has not gone away. We would advise you to continue to follow some simple routines to keep yourselves and others free from infection:
- Get vaccinated
- Wear a mask when in public indoor spaces – this is still mandatory in NHS buildings
- Wash your hands regularly and use hand gel to keep germs at bay
- Keep your distance and be respectful towards those people who wish to do so
For the latest COVID-19 guidance visit Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance and support – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
Your Health Partnership
Wednesday 15th June 2022