Category: Practice News


W.E.F. Tuesday 4th May 2021


Re-Opening practices and Infection control

With the continued vaccination programme and reduction in people testing positive to Covid, SHS is now able to relax one of the measures put in place to reduce transmission within practices. Practices will be able to unlock the front doors and allow patients to enter but with the precautionary measures in place:




Dear Buttercross Health Centre & Ilchester Surgery Patients, our practice doors are now open but you will only be allowed to access the building as per the following guidance

  1. Only invited patients with appointments to enter the building
  2. At entry point, patients will be required to wear a surgical fluid repellent face mask provided. Patients who do not comply will be asked to phone the practice and alternative instructions will be given- those patients will need to be treated as high risk and seen at the end of the day in the nominated room or in their cars/Carpark if privacy can be maintained and the clinician feels appropriate.
  3. All patient entering the practice must use the hand sanitiser at the entrance to the practice waiting room
  4. All patients must not have any symptoms of Covid or have tested positive in the last 10 days.
  5. The waiting room must ensure social distance is maintained with minimal seating which will need wiping down between patients.
  6. The waiting room must be well ventilated and patients advised that the room may be cooler than normal as a result.
  7. Toilets must only be used as if absolutely necessary and the usual IPC measures remain in place.
  8. The Standard Infection Control Precautions (SICPs) are the basic infection prevention and control measures necessary to reduce the risk of transmission of any infectious agents and still remain in force.


We know that everyone is eager to find out when they will get their Covid vaccination and that this is an anxious time. The NHS is working very hard to invite people who are eligible to have their vaccination, as quickly as possible. If you are aged over 50 you can now book your vaccination through the surgery or the National Booking Service, online, or by calling 119.

Please support us by ensuring your contact details are up to date, so we can contact you quickly when it is time to have your vaccination.  We are contacting eligible people by phone, letter or text message – if you have already booked an appointment at a large vaccination centre, please tell us so we can update our records.

As soon as you are invited – please confirm your appointment date and time.  You must attend all booked appointments to ensure that precious vaccines are not wasted and we can invite everyone as quickly as possible.

** If you already have an appointment over the coming weeks, whether for your first or second dose, this remains in place and it’s really important that you attend it as planned


You can get your COVID vaccination if:

  • You are aged 50 or over
  • you are at high risk from coronavirus (clinically extremely vulnerable)
  • you are an eligible frontline health or social care worker
  • you have a condition that puts you at higher risk (clinically vulnerable)
  • you have a learning disability
  • you are a main carer for someone at high risk from coronavirus

**Oxford Astrazeneca update**

On 7 April 2021, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) issued new advice, concluding a possible link between the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine AstraZeneca and extremely rare, unlikely to occur blood clots. It concluded that the benefits of vaccination continue to outweigh any risks but advised careful consideration be given to people who are at higher risk of specific types of blood clots because of their medical condition.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has weighed the relative balance of benefits and risks of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine and advise that:

  • the benefits of prompt vaccination with the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine far outweigh the risk of adverse events for individuals 30 years of age and over and those who have underlying health conditions which put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19 disease.
  • It is preferable for adults aged under 30 years without underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19 disease, to be offered an alternative COVID-19 vaccine, if available. People may make an informed choice to receive the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to receive earlier protection.