Over the past day the media has presented news to you our patients which may have caused confusion to some of you.
We have along with all Practices received correspondence from NHS England that we must ensure we continue to offer face to face appointments. This is no different to what we have been doing although albeit in a different and safe way given a global pandemic. We have had to change and evolve to current situations making sure our staff and you our patients are looked after and observing social distancing.
During the last 13 months telephone triage, video consultation and indeed face to face reviews have been in place. There has been a 20% increase in demand since 2019 and the pressure of running COVID clinics on top of this.
Rest assured we are not closed or have turned anyone away that needs our help but as I mention above ways of working have changed and will remain this way until we can be sure it is safe to remove levels of restriction.
Telephone triage and telephone consultations aim to improve access to care and there is unfortunately at times longer waits to speak routinely to a clinician. We have recently employed an advanced nurse practitioner to give us more capacity for our patients. Any patient that is defined by our team as needing face to face review will be booked in.
We cannot stress enough how vital it is for us to be able to adapt services as required and in line with government restrictions. Lockdown is starting to lift and the Road map on track but we have to be cautious and that is why we cannot make immediate changes but will be cautious in approach.
Please encourage those that are due a vaccination to come forward you are doing your bit to move this country on and out of this pandemic.
Thank you to all our patients and those in the Longlevens community for supporting us during these challenging times .