Bourn Coronavirus Update 03/05/2020

Update 3rd May 2020

INFORMATION FOR PATIENTS ABOUT ACCESSING PRIMARY CARE IN PHASE 2 OF COVID RESPONSE

The practice team would like to thank our patients for your help and understanding over the last 6 weeks as we adjusted to a completely new way of working due to Covid 19. We are now entering “phase 2” where we need to maintain precautions to prevent spread of Covid 19 to our patients and staff, but also to provide support with your non coronavirus health concerns.

Attendances to A&E nationally have fallen by 65%. Please do make sure that you call 111, 999 or attend A&E if you develop any serious symptoms such as:

  • Central chest pain (or worsening pain on exercise)
  • Weakness on one side of the face or body suggesting a stroke: think FAST (face, arms, speech, time)
  • Asthma symptoms not relieved by your inhalers
  • Sudden onset shortness of breath with chest pain

We want all patients to be clear on how best to access primary care:

We will need to continue to make the first point of contact with the practice remotely rather than an immediate face to face appointment. This allows us to provide help and advice where possible without need to attend the surgery in person, or to arrange the safest way to provide face to face care if it is needed.

If you feel you need advice from a GP, you have several options:

  1. Self-care if possible: We advise everyone to check their symptoms on the NHS website or through the NHS App to see if they can manage the symptoms themselves .
  2. DrLink – provides a remote (online) consultation tool – see details on our website.
  3. Telephone – every patient will be contacted initially by a Bourn Surgery clinician by telephone prior to any face to face appointment being booked. Evidence suggests as much as 60% of issues can be dealt with without need for physical examination at the practice.
  4. Video consultation – we have a secure platform to offer video consultation with clinicians at the practice. You may prefer this to a telephone consultation. Please do indicate to reception if you would like a video consultation, you will be sent a weblink by SMS to open up a video consultation with the clinician.
  5. Photo review – we are happy to receive photos of any skin problems you would like advice on. These can be sent direct from your smart phone, please contact reception who will send you a link. Alternatively they can be emailed. Please see our page with advice on how to take good medical photographs.
  6. Email – particularly useful for administrative enquiries such as extensions to existing sickness certificates, medicals required or shotgun licence paperwork. You can use the messaging facility built into SystemOnline or you can email us at bourn.surgery@nhs.net. Please do not use these methods for any urgent medical problems.

We are starting to plan how best to look after long term health conditions over the next few months. We will proactively contact patients with the highest health need. Some patients with recent good control over these conditions might be advised they can have a longer interval until their next routine review. If you have any concerns about your long term health conditions please do contact the practice.

We would also like to encourage people to continue to book appointments for essential vaccinations such as pneumonia, and childhood immunisations.