Watership Down Health Services During COVID-19 Pandemic

Thank you for all the words and notes of support over recent days. They are very much welcomed.

It will not be a surprise to you that the way we continue to care for you and your families will need to change. Our Partnership and our team will need to be flexible and adaptable and I know that our patients will be understanding in this respect.

We will also increasingly communicate with you via electronic means as this means we can get messages to you much quicker than using postal services, many of which are affected by the Pandemic. Please help us to be able to communicate electronically by keeping mobile numbers and email addresses updated. In addition, we will periodically be send messages through software called MJOG. Whilst we will try and minimise these, they will be for your safety and clinical care.

These are the current adaptations to our care provision. This will be subject to change.

The basic principle is to reduce physical footfall through the surgery:

  • Please do not come to the surgery as a walk in patient.
  • Please do not attend if you have a new persistent cough or a temperature of 37.8 c or over.
  • Please do not come to the surgery if you have been in contact with a proven Covid-19 case or travelled from a Covid-19 hotspot.
  • Please telephone or use the e-Consult service on our website.
  • All care will be triaged. Covid-19 Screening questions will be asked before appointments are booked and either before arrival or on arrival.
  • There will be no pre-bookable appointments face to face (other than some blood tests and those organised by a clinician).
  • We are committed to maintain as much of our normal care as we can. If you are triaged to attend the surgery you may be seen by staff wearing gowns/ gloves and face masks.

This is the, non-exhaustive, list of what will continue.

Care that will continue:

  • Remote consultation via telephone, text, video, e-Consult.
  • Urgent on the day care.
  • Face to Face review if clinically needed – triaged first.
  • All wound management: You or a carer might be asked to learn how undertake the dressings.
  • Leg and foot ulcers.
  • Stitch removal.
  • Cervical Smears.
  • Proactive care work for the frail and vulnerable.
  • Nebido, Degralix, Vitamin B12 injections: You or a partner might be asked to learn how to do carry out the injection.
  • Zoladex etc injections.
  • Contraceptive coils and implants.
  • Childhood Immunisations.
  • Midwife appointments – this might be at a different location.
  • 6 week mother and baby checks.
  • Clinically indicated blood tests for those undergoing treatment.
  • Asthma and COPD reviews will be conducted remotely.
  • Epilepsy reviews will be done remotely.
  • Hypertension reviews: remotely if home Blood Pressure (BP) results available, otherwise postponed.
  • Diabetes reviews: Bloods tests will be performed and then remote consultation with the results.
  • Ischaemic Heart Disease: Blood tests performed then remote review if home BP results available.
  • Renal dysfunction review for some patients.
  • Blood tests: for Near Patient testing (e.g. on Methotrexate/ Disease modifying bloods etc) Annual reviews/ Urgent cases.
  • Care for frail/Elderly/Vulnerable: This might be by a GP/Paramedic/ Nurse etc.
  • End of Life Care.
  • Nursing Home: Virtual ward round/remote ward round.
  • Dispensing: Kingsclere.
  • Prescribing, Remote medication reviews.

Care that will be amended/ postponed/ temporarily suspended:

These changes will be made only during the length of the Covid-19 pandemic and for the shortest time possible. Thank you for your understanding.

  • Spirometry
  • Travel health assessments and vaccinations
  • Minor operations, injections and Cryotherapy
  • Ear Syringing
  • Routine annual blood tests for stable Long Term Conditions – Clinician will decide
  • Private paperwork/ assessments/ medicals
  • NHS Health check
  • Dermoscopy clinics
  • Learning Difficulty and certain other annual reviews.
  • Formal Face to face nursing home ward rounds
  • Medicine switches and some medication reviews
  • Non-essential training/ update meetings
  • Treatment of Minor self- limiting conditions: Please look at NHS choices or speak to a pharmacist for advice on how to treat these at home yourself.
  • Fit notes for self isolation – Please get self-certificate from 111 online