Why are GPs needing to work differently.
Please click on the link below to see information provided by the British Medical Association
There is currently an international shortage of blood bottles used for taking samples and clinicians working in GP practices, hospitals, community and mental health trusts and ambulance trusts have been asked to suspend non-essential blood tests. Our clinicians and managers in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight are working together to be more efficient. We will ensure we don't waste blood bottles and that we don't duplicate tests which have already been done. We are being thoughtful about which tests are ordered and prioritising those tests which will have an immediate impact on the diagnosis or treatment. Our clinicians and their teams are working hard to prioritise our blood tests and we appreciate your patience whilst we put in place systems to manage this difficulty safely. We would like to reassure all our patients that this disruption in supply should not affect any essential blood tests and any tests that are delayed will be rescheduled as soon as possible. We are working closely with NHS England to follow their guidance. We will continue to provide you with updates regarding this and thank you for your support.
Data reveals intense pressure on GPs. . .
New data released by the NHS covering Hampshire, Dorset, Wiltshire and part of Somerset has thrown a spotlight on the huge increase in workload faced by GP practices as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The number of appointments offered has risen by an average of 11.8% compared to July two years ago – with Hampshire facing the biggest increase at 16.4%, followed by Wiltshire and part of Somerset combined at 13.2%. The increase was less, but still sizeable, in Dorset at 8.8%. The data includes towns such as Swindon, Fareham and Gosport, Southampton and Portsmouth, as well as the Isle of Wight.
As well as a GP shortage, there has been further pressure caused by population growth, a rise in people seeking mental health support and a backlog of routine treatment. GP surgeries have also had to adapt to new ways of working, introduced new technology for online appointments and given Covid patients oxygen saturation equipment to monitor them remotely. They have also carried out far more flu jabs than ever before.
Wessex Local Medical Committees (LMC), which represents the region’s GPs and practices, is urging patients to be far more understanding of the pressure their local surgeries are under.
Dr Gareth Bryant, Acting Chief Executive of the LMC and a GP in Wiltshire, said: “We are not looking for sympathy, just a better understanding of what we are coping with. Our GP practices have faced unprecedented demand, partly due to delivering the Covid vaccination programme and supporting patients who are ill with coronavirus, and also because they are being affected by the backlog elsewhere in the NHS.
“At the same time, there is a national shortage of GPs and practices are adapting as best they can by recruiting other staff to their teams such a physiotherapists, mental health practitioners and pharmacists. They are trying to get through appointments as best they can but there may be some delays. The Government has promised that more GPs will be recruited but it’s not happening at the speed or the levels we need.
“Our teams have put themselves in the frontline and been exposed to considerable personal risk, sometimes at the expense of their own physical, mental, and families’ health. We have sadly lost colleagues and loved ones to this terrible virus too. Many staff in the NHS are stressed and burnt out.
“We want to encourage people to give their support to their GP practice, whose staff are being kind, patient and responsible, and who are doing everything they can to support their local communities in such difficult circumstances. Our practices in the Wessex area are rated as good by over 83% of the public and even higher in most places – above the national average.”
One of the reasons for the increase in appointments undertaken, even taking into account that over 50,000 people a month fail to attend their appointments, is the rise of email, phone calls and video appointments, up 132.77% from 276,590 in July two years ago, to 643,807 this July. Face-to-face appointments are down 11.43% on average.
LMC Medical Director Dr Andy Purbrick, a GP Partner in Dorset, added: “As independent businesses, GPs have responded extremely well to the challenges of the pandemic and shown themselves to be resilient, adaptable and innovative in the way they protect both patients and staff. They should be praised for the ways in which they have adjusted, including introducing additional technology and communication channels. However, the appointment can often take longer online and result in asking someone to come in to see their GP, duplicating the time involved.
“GPs much prefer to see people face to face, recognising that many ailments cannot be effectively picked up over a phone call or email, and over half of the appointments are being done this way. However, their priority is to keep everyone safe and for many people, online technology or phone call is a more effective way of communicating when it comes to issues that are less serious.”
To all our Patients
We are aware of the planned move to lifting the remaining Covid restrictions in England from the 19th of July.
Medical settings are a higher risk environment and will need to be subject to more control measures than other public facilities.
We are acting very cautiously and are maintaining:
The delta variant is more transmissible and patients may come to the surgery when they are contagious.
It is our duty to do all we can to keep both our patients and our staff safe whilst we deliver our care.
Drs Seiger, Poole and Majumdar
2021 GP Patient Survey Results
National data opt-out - NHS Digital
If you don’t want your identifiable patient data to be shared for purposes except for your own care, you can opt-out by registering a Type 1 Opt-out.
This collection will start on 1 July 2021 so if you do not want your data to be shared with NHS Digital please register your Type 1 Opt-out with the surgery by 23 June 2021.
The data held in your GP medical records is shared with other healthcare professionals for the purposes of your individual care. It is also shared with other organisations to support health and care planning and research.
If you do not want your personally identifiable patient data to be shared outside of your GP practice for purposes except your own care, you can register an opt-out with your GP practice. This is known as a Type 1 Opt-out.
To register a Type 1 Opt-out, for yourself or for a dependent (if you are the parent or legal guardian of the patient) (to Opt-out) you can download the form from the link below and then returning it to the surgery before the deadline of June 23rd 2021.
More information about this matter can be viewed on National data opt-out – NHS Digital
From 17 May 2021, people in England who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can demonstrate their vaccination status for international travel. A full course is currently two doses of any approved vaccine. Vaccine status will be available from:
It may take more than a week for your identity to be checked and verified so you can use these services.
If you cannot access these online services, and you have had 2 vaccines, you can request a paper letter from the NHS by calling 119. Only call 119 if you had your second dose more than 5 working days ago. It may take 7 working days for the letter to arrive.
This practice is not able to provide you with a letter that shows your COVID-19 vaccination status.
When you're planning your travel, check the latest information on demonstrating your COVID-19 status when travelling abroad on the gov.uk website. Make sure there is time to get proof of your vaccination status before you leave.
Phlebotomy Service - change of location November 2020
The phlebotomy service offered jointly for the 3 Ryde practices has moved location. It is no longer at Westridge as is now provided from Tower House Surgery, Rink Road, Ryde. Please still telephone your own surgery to make an appointment for this clinic.
2020 GP Patient survey results
NHS Diabetes Advice - Helpline during the COVID-19 pandemic
Diabetes Advice Line - click here for more information
You can access NHS Diabetes Advice via Diabetes UK’s support line on 0345 123 2399 Monday-Friday from 9am-6pm.
Cervical Screening Scam
We have received reports of a possible scam. Some women are being contacted by text message, claiming to be from the call and recall service to advise they are overdue for screening. The message asks them to call a mobile number and provide personal details.
These messages are not from the NHS Cervical Screening Programme.
If you receive one of these messages, please report it to the Action Fraud Line on 0300 123 2040 or via their online reporting tool: https://www.actionfraud.police.uk/reporting-fraud-and-cyber-crime
Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and your information
The ICO recognises the unprecedented challenges the NHS and other health professionals are facing during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The ICO also recognise that 'Public bodies may require additional collection and sharing of personal data to protect against serious threats to public health.'
The Government have also taken action in respect of this and on 20th March 2020 the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care issued a Notice under Regulation 3(4) of The Health Service (Control of Patient Information) Regulations 2002 requiring organisations such as GP Practices to use your information to help GP Practices and other healthcare organisations to respond to and deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.
In order to look after your healthcare needs during this difficult time, we may urgently need to share your personal information, including medical records, with clinical and non-clinical staff who belong to organisations that are permitted to use your information and need to use it to help deal with the Covid-19 pandemic. This could (amongst other measures) consist of either treating you or a member of your family and enable us and other healthcare organisations to monitor the disease, assess risk and manage the spread of the disease.
Please be assured that we will only share information and health data that is necessary to meet yours and public healthcare needs.
The Secretary of State for Health and Social Care has also stated that these measures are temporary and will expire on 30th September 2020 unless a further extension is required. An extension has now been granted and they will expire on 30th September 2021. Any further extension will be will be provided in writing and we will communicate the same to you. Please also note that the data protection and electronic communication laws do not stop us from sending public health messages to you, either by phone, text or email as these messages are not direct marketing. It may also be necessary, where the latest technology allows us to do so, to use your information and health data to facilitate digital consultations and diagnoses and we will always do this with your security in mind.
If you are concerned about how your information is being used, please contact our DPO using the contact details provided on the Privacy Notice tab on the side.
Prescribing of over the counter medicines
The Isle of Wight CCG has been actively implementing NHS England Guidance around reducing the prescribing of over the counter medicines
The NHS has been spending around £136 million a year on prescriptions for medicines that can be bought from a pharmacy or supermarket, such as paracetamol. By reducing the amount the NHS spends on over the counter medicines, we can give priority to treatments for people with more serious conditions, such as cancer, diabetes and mental health problems.
Free STI testing kits
You won't know if you (or one of your partners) have an STI, because they often show no symptoms - yet can lead to serious health problems and are a leading cause of infertility. The good news is that it is free and easy to get you home STI test. Just click the link below:
Your Data Matters to the NHS
In May 2018 the strict rules about how data can and cannot be used were strengthened. The NHS is committed to keeping patient information safe and always being clear about how it is used. You can choose whether your confidential patient information is used for research and planning.
To find out more visit: nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters or call 0300 303 5678
Improving access to general practice: evening and weekend appointments now available
Patients who are registered at this practice can now book an appointment to see a GP or nurse on weekday evenings (after 6.30pm) or at the weekends (on Saturday and Sunday). Appointments will either take place at this practice or at another NHS setting nearby. Talk to the practice receptionist to find out more or book an appointment.
By March 2019 everyone in England will benefit from access to general practice appointments in the evenings and weekends at a time that is most convenient to them. This is part of a national drive to help improve access to general practice and get the best possible outcomes for patients. Further information is available at www.england.nhs.uk/gpaccess
Isle of Wight Advanced Access Information - please click for more information
CQC - we are pleased to announce that following a recent inspection in May 2018 that we have been awarded a 'Good' rating once again.
The Care and Health Information Exchange (CHIE) CHIE is a secure system which shares health and social care information from GP surgeries (including our own practice), hospitals, community and mental health, social services and others. It helps professionals across Hampshire, the Isle of Wight and surrounding areas provide safer and faster treatment for you and your family. We feel the many benefits include: • Help in ensuring that you only have to tell your story once • Reducing delays to your treatment – such as the need to reduce blood tests • Making sure the GPs, nurses and others involved in your care know about your medical history. To protect your privacy and confidentiality, only health and social care professionals who are involved in your care are allowed access to your record and can identify you from it. Your information is also used to improve future care for you, your family and for other patients. This helps plan NHS services and supports medical research. To keep your information safe it is moved to a separate database called ‘Care and Health Information Analytics’ (CHIA) and changed so that it cannot be used to identify you. People who analyse data on CHIA do not have access to CHIE, so cannot identify you.
You have the right to opt out of having your data on CHIE for your care or CHIA for health planning and research. If you want to do this, please speak to your practice or contact the CHIE team directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or phoning 0300 123 1519. You can also visit www.CHIE.org.uk for further information
National Diabetes Audit:
helping to reduce diabetes and improve diabetes care
This GP practice is taking part in an important national project about people at risk of diabetes and diabetes care and treatment in the NHS. The project is called the National Diabetes Audit (NDA).
If you have diabetes, non-diabetic hyperglycaemia, impaired glucose tolerance or pre-diabetes, your GP practice will share information about your diabetes care and treatment with the NDA. The type of information, and how it is shared, is controlled by law and enforced by strict rules of confidentiality and security.
For further information about how your data is used, please see the NDA patient information leaflet.
Taking part in the NDA shows that this GP practice is committed to reducing diabetes and improving care for people with diabetes.
If you do not want your information to be used, please inform the receptionist, your GP or nurse. This will not affect your care.
More information is available, please click this link for a patient information leaflet
NDA Patient leaflet
Shingles vaccination who’s eligible?
Aged years 70?
Plus anyone in their 70s who was born after 1 September 1942 and has not yet had the vaccine.
Aged years 78 ?
Plus anyone aged 79 years old who has missed out on the vaccine.
Protect yourself from the pain of shingles – speak to your GP surgery about having your vaccine today! https://www.shinglesaware.co.uk/
If the answer is yes, you may be entitled to a Shingles vaccination. This vaccination is only needed once so if you had it previously, you will not need to have it again. Please contact the surgery to make an appointment with the nurse.
Isle Find It - website directory of services.