November 2020 Patient Newsletter
Update from Dr Shields
You will remember that in August 2019 the practice joined Octagon Medical Practice, alongside several other Cambridgeshire practices. The concept was in line with the idea of large scale primary care delivering consistent services effectively. Great Staughton Surgery was to be part of Octagon West, sharing staff across three practices. Sadly it has not worked that way and the whole group is disbanding. We keep going, innovating, looking forward, and we still intend being part of an organisation that integrates care effectively. In the meantime we are open, using technology to communicate with patients, and whenever necessary, having appointments in the traditional way. More updates will follow as the practice navigates the ever changing NHS.
Please visit our new website at www.greatstaughtonsurgery.nhs.uk.
Here you will find information on online appointment bookings, ordering repeat prescriptions and health information.
Since leaving Octagon at the end of September we have been through a restructure at the practice.
Our GP Partner; Dr Stuart Shields, is supported by two Salaried GP’s Dr Matthew Crowson and Dr Laura Grady (currently on maternity leave). Debbie Brading is covering maternity leave and works as an Advanced Nurse Practitioner, leading our nursing team. The practice continues to be supported by management, administration and dispensary teams.
The restructure means that we have said goodbye to two of our clinicians, Dr Rakesh Modi and Nurse Practitioner Tracey King, and one of our administration team, Bev Barnes. We wish them all well.
To help keep us all safe we have installed a dispensary intercom for patients collecting their prescriptions. We have also moved to contactless and card payments only.
We would like to encourage patients to use SystmOnline to request their repeat prescriptions. This can be accessed via our new website www.greatstaughtonsurgery.nhs.uk
Thank you for your cooperation.
Thank you for your patience and support during this year’s flu clinics so far. They have run seamlessly and we have been grateful for your positive feedback.
For the first time, those aged over 50 will be eligible for the flu vaccination. Vaccination of the 50 to 64 age group who are not at risk because of a medical condition will not take place until later in the season, in line with government guidance: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/flu/
Pneumonia: If you’re over 65, or in one of the known risk categories for pneumonia, you should have a vaccination if we’ve invited you. If you’ve been invited but haven’t made your appointment yet, please contact the surgery and we’ll book an appointment for you.
Shingles: If you’re aged 70 or 78, or born on or after 2nd September 1942 and are under 80, you can have the shingles vaccination if you haven’t already had it. If you’d like the shingles vaccination, please contact the surgery and we’ll book you an appointment.
Reminder to patients
We realise this year has been difficult for us all. Our team continues to work hard to ensure we provide high quality medical care in a friendly and accessible way, in line with the practice mission statement.
However, we would like to remind patients that the NHS and Great Staughton Surgery operate a zero tolerance policy towards aggressive, abusive and violent behaviour.
While we understand that you may be upset, afraid, worried or in pain we do expect that you are polite and respectful whilst speaking to anyone that works here.
Whilst we are awaiting guidance around the Covid-19 vaccination, please get the latest NHS information and advice from the official website:https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
Just because Cervical screening awareness week has passed, it doesn’t mean you’ve missed the boat. We’re working hard to keep patients and staff safe with new ways of working. We’ll ask you to wear a face covering when you come for your appointment, so don’t be surprised when you see us all wearing one too.
If you’ve never had a cervical screening before, you might be wondering what will happen at your appointment. The NHS has some easy-to-understand guidance to offer: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cervical-screening/
COPD Awareness Month
It was COPD Awareness Day on 18th November, and we’d like to raise awareness. If you’re more out of breath than others of the same age, cough several times each day and bring up mucous, you might be suffering from COPD, particularly if you’re a current or ex-smoker. Many COPD sufferers don’t begin to notice symptoms until they’re in their 40s or 50s. Winter can be a particularly difficult time for sufferers as the colder weather can cause exacerbations.
How not to wear a mask
We know that there’s been a lot of publicity about mask-wearing to protect others, but wearing a mask incorrectly reduces the protection it can offer to others and can increase the risk to yourself.
Oakley knows how to wear his mask, and his owner shared these lovely pictures to illustrate this. We know that Oakley was cute in his mask demonstration, but it’s not all about the cuteness. The WHO has guidance that explains why it’s important to get it right. Wearing our masks correctly can help to save lives.