NEWS

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Appointments

FLU VACCINES ARE NOW AVAILABLE


DO NOT BOOK ANY APPOINTMENT UNLESS YOU HAVE RECEIVED A TEXT OR LETTER FROM US AS WE HAVE ORDERED THESE PER LAST YEARS COHORT.

ANY PATIENT WHO HAS BOOKED AN APPOINTMENT BUT HAS NOT RECEIVED A LETTER OR TEXT FROM US WILL HAVE THEIR APPOINTMENT CANCELLED.


We have to order our flu vaccinations a year in advance for our at risk patients and the over 65’s. We understand there are more cohorts this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic but we were not aware of these until recently. Our vaccines are reserved for the cohorts as stated above and should any vaccines remaining after this we will offer these to the extra cohorts (50-64 years and household members of shielding patients) after 1st November 2020.


Booking your appointment for your vaccine:

• Patients who have a registered mobile on their records will be sent a text informing them on the colour clinic they need to book into. Patients without a mobile on their records will be sent a letter or they can call between 4-6pm only to book an appointment.

• Patients must book into the correct colour clinic in order to reserve their flu vaccination. If the patient books into the incorrect clinic they will be cancelled and we may not be able to reserve you another vaccine due to allocation of appointments per vaccines.

• We may send you a text with a questionnaire attached regarding if you are declining your flu vaccination. We would appreciate responses. This will stop us from sending you further invites.

• Only contact the surgery to book a flu vaccine appointment between 4pm-6pm. If you call outside these hours we will not deal with you request and ask you call back during the allocate times mentioned.

• Only patients who have been sent a text or letter may book these appointments. Any patient who has not had a letter or text their appointment will be cancelled.

• Patients on additional cohorts will be able to book after 1st November 2020. (50-64years and household members of shielding patients).



Attending the Practice for your vaccine:

• You must attend for your appointment on your own unless you need help in mobilising.

• Walk to the practice if you are able to. The only car parking at the practice will be for blue badge holders only.

• Do not arrive early or late for your appointment time: we have allocated a strict number of patients per period to ensure that people are queueing for the minimum of time and social distancing is maintained.

• You must wear a face mask before entering the building. Failure to do so will mean you will be turned away due to risk to staff and other patients and you will be contacted at a later date to discuss this.

• Your temperature will be checked before you enter the building by a member of staff. Should your temperature be raised we will ask you to leave the premises immediately and we will contact you with an alternative appointment.

• We encourage you not to touch anything in the practice. Bring your own hand sanitiser to use should you wish to.

• Please follow the instructions for queuing. The queue will be controlled to ensure social distancing. If you are in a wheelchair or have very limited mobility, please make yourself know to the Queue Marshalls who will be easily identifiable.

• There will be a one way system throughout the building. All patients are expected to follow the one way system unless you have problems with mobility and we will escort you safely back through the main entrance.

• If it is raining on the day, please come prepared with an umbrella as the queue will be outside for a short period of time.

• There will be no chairs available to sit while waiting and you will not be able to sit whilst having the vaccination (for infection control). If you think you will struggle with this, please speak to the Queue Marshall on arrival.

• Wear clothing which makes it easy to expose your upper arm such as a t-shirt. The vaccinations will be given in the doorways of the rooms to comply with infection control.

• Use of toilets will not be available.

• Do not attend if you or any members of your household have symptoms of coronavirus, or if you have been told to isolate. We will be able to rebook you after you have completed your isolation period.

• Please follow the instructions of the staff who are supervising the patient flow – they are there for your safety.



APPOINTMENTS DURING CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

All appointments Monday - Friday will be telephone triage with either a GP or Advanced Care Practitioner. Requests for telephone triage run until 10am each morning unless the list becomes full - which ever occurs first. Do not attend the surgery to request an appointment, please contact us by telephone. Do not attend the surgery unless you have been specifically asked to do so by a member of the team.

All Nurse appointments for long term condition reviews will be held over the telephone unless stated otherwise at the time of booking.


CHANGES TO APPOINTMENT SYSTEM FROM WEEK COMMENCING 2ND MARCH 2020

Our plan for the winter pressures was to have the drop in service on a Friday morning until the end of February and due to the popularity for the service we have decided to continue this service for longer.

However, the day in which drop in surgery is held will change from Friday’s to Thursday’s as of the week commencing 2nd March 2020. Therefore, on Thursday’s there will be no option for a Telephone Triage Call and you will be re-directed to an alternative service if you request this.

The normal guidance still applies in that you must arrive at the surgery before 9:30am. We may close drop in before this time if we reach capacity. Please follow us on Facebook as we keep this updated as much as possible for capacity or if we close earlier than planned.

The appointment system days are below:

Monday – Doctor First Telephone Triage

Tuesday – Doctor First Telephone Triage

Wednesday – Doctor First Telephone Triage

Thursday – Drop In service

Friday – Doctor First Telephone Triage







Doctor First Appointment System

Commencing Monday 1st April 2019


What are we changing?

We are changing our appointment system to a Doctor First Appointment System. This means patients requesting a GP appointment will be assessed by Doctor by telephone.We have been trialing some appointments as Doctor First since August 2018 and the general feedback from patients has been positive as they can gain advice from the Doctor without having to have a face to face appointment.The Patient Advisors (formally known as Receptionists) will no longer be able to make any pre bookable appointments requested by patients as these will be done by the GP once you have spoken to them. This ensures that if you do require an appointment that you are seen in an appropriate timescale and we can adapt appointment times should you require longer with the Doctor.

You will need to contact the surgery on a morning before 10am and ask the Patient Advisors for a call back from the Doctor. They will then take your name, date of birth and address and the most appropriate number to call you back on. They will then ask for a brief description of the health issue you are calling for. All information you give our Patient Advisors is strictly confidential, but we understand not all patients would wish to discuss their health concerns with Patient Advisors. The reason we ask for a brief description is to help assist the Doctor in identifying any calls which may need priority – such as a child with a fever and a non-fading rash on glass test which could indicate meningitis as opposed to a healthy adult with a common cold. If the Doctor indicates that you need to be seen or reviewed, they will offer you an appropriate appointment.

If you call the practice after 10am a Doctor will only call you back if you have an urgent medical problem that cannot wait until the next working day or that can’t be seen at another alternative service.

The Doctor will only try to contact you once so please ensure that you have your phone with you at all times. The number may show as private or withheld.


Why are we changing?

The Practice is currently going through some changes. Dr Cormack is leaving the Surgery in June 2019 and therefore we are no longer hosting a GP registrar which results in our capacity being compromised. This means as a Practice to be able to maintain the number of appointments we offer to patients we need to be more proactive in how we deliver our appointments. By changing our system we are hoping to also accommodate the increase of patients requesting to be seen by a Doctor.

BMA guidance suggests that Practices should be offering 72 GP appointments (these can be face to face or telephone consultations) per 1,000 patients. The National average currently is 56 GP appointments per 1,000 patients. This means our Practice; in accordance with BMA guidance should be offering 367 appointments per week or by running in line with the national average, 286 appointments per week.

As you will be able to see from the below appointment statistics (that are based on average and not including annual leave, sick leave or other types of leave), the practice has managed to increase capacity since implementing the new system to meet the BMA’s guidance.

July 2018 (Drop in):

183 GP appointments

30 GP appointments, where patients were seen as “extra or acutely” (average per week)

79 Registrar appointments

Total: 292 appointments per week

October 2018 (Current system):

340 GP appointments

36 Registrar appointments

Total: 376 appointments per week

April 2019 (Doctor First Model):

240 GP telephone appointments with 3 GP's covering morning session

134 Face to Face booked by Doctor with 2 GP’s covering afternoon session

Total: 374 appointments per week


What are the benefits of changing?

  • Most patients do not need to be seen by a Doctor as their health issue could be dealt with over the telephone which can be more convenient for patients


  • By introducing the Doctor First Appointment System this give the Doctors more time to see the patients that need a face to face appointment and spend longer with them if needed. This helps appointments to run to time and means you’re more likely to be seen on time.


  • It can also mean the Doctors can send you for any tests or investigations before your appointment, if you require any.


  • Patients do not have to wait in surgery for appointments meaning you can continue your day as planned


  • You are seen when it is appropriate


  • The Practice is able to maintain our capacity despite staff changes and not currently hosting a GP Registrar.


  • The Patient Advisors can re direct you to another alternative person or service (if necessary) such as seeing a Nurse, booking an appointment with a Physiotherapist, referring you to Social Prescribing, advising you to seek advice from your local pharmacy, book you an appointment with the Practice Pharmacist, advise you to attend another appropriate service such as the minor injury unit, A&E, 999, 111 or walk in centre.


Other Information:

We understand that this means that the phone lines from 8:30am-10am are going to be extremely busy and we have arranged the reception team to be answering calls continuously until 10am. The telephone lines will hold up to 10 calls then you will hear the engaged tone. We can only persuade you to keep trying. We could implement a telephone queuing system which would inform you of the position you are in the queue, but this is a high charge service which is not a plausible option for our patient population.


Requests for triage will finish at 10am or when the lists are full – whichever occurs first.


If you require an interpreter for your appointments, the practice will accommodate these requests.


If you are a worker and categorically cannot make or take phone calls the practice will try and accommodate these requests.


Continuation sick notes must be requested before 10am. If you contact the surgery after this time you will be asked to call the next working day. Please note, Doctors cannot issue sick notes for future dates, they can only issue them from the date they expire. However, Doctors can back date sick notes.


Home Visits must be requested before 10am and are only available for housebound, vulnerable, severely ill or end of life patients.


The Patient Advisors will not be able to make any pre-bookable appointments via patient requests. The Patients Advisors can only make appointments that have been requested from the GP (such as contacting patients regarding test results or patients needing a medication review). The GP will state on this whether it is urgent or routine for which the Patient Advisors can accommodate the request accordingly.


The Patient Advisors have been trained in recognizing medical symptoms that require attention that needs to be seen elsewhere (urgent or otherwise). These can include: chest pain, breathlessness, severe bleeding, overdose, severe pain, broken bones and sprains, trauma and collapse. If the Patient Advisors advise you to attend or contact another service you must do so. This is for your own health and not because the Patient Advisors are turning you away but because we don’t have the correct equipment in the surgery and the Doctors will only advise you of the same.




Alternatively, if you are registered for our online services appointments are bookable by Clicking Here and logging in.
If you wish to enquire about this service please ask at reception.

Receptionists are available 8.15 - 12:30 and 1:30 - 6.00 each day except for Thursdays when they are available until 3pm.

Patients are reminded that it is their responsibility to keep appointments. Failure to notify the practice of cancellations may prevent another patient using the appointment. The surgery operates a DNA policy and may request removal from the practice list for recurrent DNAs.

Any patients displaying violent or abusive behaviour to staff, other patients or doctors are likely to be asked to leave the practice list.



Our Location

S5 8GS

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Your Doctors Surgery in Sheffield

Located in a central location with ample parking.


Location & Contact

The Health Care Surgery
63 Palgrave Road
Sheffield
S5 8GS
Tel: 0114 234 4729

S5 8GS
Opening Hours

Monday: 08.15 – 18.00
Tuesday: 08.15 – 18.00
Wednesday: 08.15 – 18.00
Thursday: 08.15 – 15.00
Friday: 08.15 – 18.00

Phone lines open at 8:30am