Letter to Patients: March 2021
With Spring on our doorsteps and Summer in reach, we know that our patients and the communities we support are eager to get back to some sort of normality as the roll out of the NHS Covid-19 vaccination programme in Somerset accelerates.
Although the county is making great progress vaccinating people in the priority groups described by the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), there are still a significant number of people to vaccinate.
In addition, there is no current change to Government guidance and lockdown measures and, as such our GP practices will continue to provide healthcare services using enhanced infection control measures; this means that we are only able to see patients who have pre-booked an appointment and reception doors will remain closed during this time. This is to ensure the ongoing safety of our staff and subsequently the ability to continue services. However, most importantly, it is to protect you, your families and neighbours.
Despite patients only attending the practice if they have a booked face to face appointment, please remember that our staff are still continuing to undertake everyday work – just in different ways. The practices remain exceptionally busy providing routine and urgent healthcare services in addition to local Covid-19 vaccinations too.
We understand that the closer we get to the easing of current restrictions the more enthusiastic we become to go back to the way things were. Despite this, we are not quite there and we ask that our patients continue to respect and follow the instructions given to them by our surgery teams when attending appointments and that they are considerate when speaking to our staff who, much like everyone else, have had an incredibly challenging and long year.
While we understand that everyone waits in anticipation of the future easing of restrictions, please remember to be patient and kind as we are doing everything we possibly can to provide safe and efficient care to all.
Thank you for your ongoing support and patience.
Most GP surgeries, hospitals, mental health services and community care services now offer video consultations.
Video consultations save you stress and money and they are a safe way for us to see how you are whilst social distancing
All you need is a charged device, a quiet, private space and a good internet connection
A video call is very similar to a face-to-face appointment. You will get the same care.
The clinician will ask you questions about your health to work out the best treatment for you. You can also ask any questions you may have. If appropriate, the clinician may ask you to come to the surgery for physical assessment following an initial video consultation, or refer you to a specialist service.
If your video call does not work or you do not have signal, we will try a phone call instead.
If this is not possible, you will be able to rebook your appointment.”