RIVERSIDE FLU VACCINATIONS 2020 - 2021
THE RIVERSIDE PRACTICE
would like to invite their patients
who are “ELIGIBLE” for the flu vaccination
to contact the practice to book a vaccination appointment
Patients over 65yrs of age - or Patients between 18-64yrs of age within an "At Risk" group
Seasonal flu vaccinations are offered free of charge to our patients who are in an ‘At Risk Group’ these consist of;
- People aged 65 or over
- All pregnant women
- People with a serious medical condition such as:-
- Chronic (long term) respiratory disease
- Obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or bronchitis
- Chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
- Chronic kidney disease at stage 3,4 or 5
- Chronic liver disease
- Chronic neurological disease such as Parkinson’s or Motor Neurone disease
- A weakened immune system due to disease such as HIV/AIDS
- Treatment (such as cancer)
- Morbid obesity (adults with a body mass index >40kg/m2
- Also people living in long-stay residential care homes or other long stay care facilities
- People who are in receipt of carers allowance or those who are the main carer of an older or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk of the carer falls ill.
EXTENDED FLU VACCINATION PROGRAMME
28th August 2020
Expanded flu programme to focus on most vulnerable groups first
This winter, the flu vaccination is more important than ever to protect those most vulnerable as we prepare for the potential risks of both flu and COVID-19.
GPs and community pharmacists across the East of England have welcomed plans to extend the flu vaccination programme to those 50-64 year olds who weren’t previously eligible for a free jab, but we must make sure that those most at risk are able to get the vaccine first.
In line with national plans to protect the most vulnerable first, those aged 65 and over, people with certain long-term medical conditions, pregnant women, and young children will be vaccinated from September onwards.
In a phased approach, people aged 50 - 64 who are not in a clinical risk group are to be offered the vaccine later in the season - likely in November or December when additional vaccine stock becomes available.
There has been a reported increase in enquiries from people aged 50 to 64 to GP practices and community pharmacies about the vaccination. If you are in this newly eligible group, please do not contact your practice or pharmacy about the vaccination or to try to book an appointment for a flu jab at this time.
This will allow GP practices and pharmacies to focus on their work to get the most vulnerable groups in our community vaccinated first.
Your practice will contact you as soon as they are ready to offer you an appointment so please wait to hear from them or to receive more information. Community pharmacies will also be able to offer the vaccine to you from November onwards. Please rest assured that if you are eligible for the vaccine, you will be contacted once it is being offered to your group.
Debbie Bodhanya, Managing Partner of The Limes Medical Centre, Essex said: “We are so pleased to be able to expand our flu campaign this year. Wait until we have vaccinated the very vulnerable, young and elderly, then we’ll be ready to vaccinate the over 50’s. Check back with us after 1st November. Let’s work together to support the NHS this wintertime and keep our patients safe and well!”
Flu should be taken seriously; it is more than just a bad cold. Some people may need to stay in bed for a few days but for others who are more vulnerable it can lead to more severe illness, can worsen existing illness and can lead to pneumonia or bronchitis. In the worst cases, flu can result in a stay in hospital, or even death.
Dr Sarah Whiteman, GP and Medical Director of Bedfordshire, Luton & Milton Keynes Clinical Commissioning Groups, said: “This year, more than ever before, it is important for patients at risk to have the flu vaccination. Flu vaccination offers important protection against flu, saves lives and helps to reduce the pressure on the NHS in the busy winter months. Expanding the programme is welcome but it is important that those usually at higher risk are protected first as they are likely to be more seriously affected by flu.”
Practices and pharmacies are following strict guidance and social distancing measures to make sure that it is safe for you to come for your vaccination. When you are offered your vaccine, please take the opportunity to gain this valuable protection for yourself and your community.
Important Information about the Coronavirus - COVID 19
We’re here to help
Due to the coronavirus outbreak, how you contact us will be different at the moment. This is to limit face-to-face contact whenever possible and help stop the spread of coronavirus.
Your GP practice is open and if you need to see your GP, please ring us on 01354 661922.
You can also call NHS 111. Please do not come to the surgery unless you have an appointment.
Appointments are being delivered face-to-face, online and over the telephone. If you are asked to come into the surgery for a face-to-face appointment, please remember to wear a face covering. Measures are in place to keep you safe from infection during your visit to the surgery.
If you are waiting for a check-up, please be assured we will be in touch
For the latest NHS information and advice on coronavirus or to book a test visit https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
What to expect when you visit our practice
To ensure the safety of our staff and patients we have measures in place to minimise the risk from coronavirus.
On arrival the inner lobby door is closed. This is to enable us to manage the number of patients within the practice at any one time. The door will be opened by a member of the reception team and you will be called forward.
All patients attending an appointment at the practice are asked to follow our safety guidelines:
- Please be on time for your appointment, if you are early please wait in your car or outside until your allocated appointment time
- If you are waiting outside, please ensure social distancing at all times (please wear suitable clothing for weather/bring an umbrella)
- Please wear a mask when inside the practice
- Once inside the practice, please follow signage and the one-way system in place
If you have any questions or concerns about attending your appointment, please contact the practice.
What to expect from your telephone consultation
The reception team will arrange a telephone call for you with a nurse or GP.
They will advise you of when to expect the call.
Things to consider ahead of your consultation:
Please ensure you are ready to accept the telephone/online call at the allocated time
- Find somewhere quiet and confidential to have the call and, if this isn’t possible or is tricky, make this clear when you are making your appointment.
- If you would like to have someone with you for your consultation, please ask a family member or friend can join the call with you
- It is a good idea to have a pen and paper with you so you can write down advice or next steps
If the GP or nurse decides they need to see you in person you will be offered a face-to-face appointment at the practice and they will confirm these details with you.
Access to Coronavirus testing
There is very high demand for coronavirus tests and it is vital tests are prioritised for people with symptoms to help stop the spread of the virus.
- If you have coronavirus symptoms, you must get a test.
- If you don’t have symptoms, don’t get a test.
If you have symptoms and need to book a test, you can do this online or by ringing 119.
Please be aware that GP practices or A&E are not able to provide Coronavirus tests.
We all need to play our part to protect the NHS Test and Trace service for those who really need it.
Stock up your medicine cabinet for winter
Ahead of the winter months patients are reminded to stock up your medicine cabinet with self care essentials.
Many winter illnesses such as colds, sore throats and upset stomachs can easily be treated at home with medicines available at low cost from your local pharmacy or supermarket - no GP appointment or prescription required.
Not only will this help save you time and to feel better quicker, but it will also help save the NHS much needed resources. Self-care essentials include:
- packet of pain relief (paracetamol)
- cold and sore throat remedies
- first aid kit
- upset stomach treatment
- rehydration treatment
- heartburn and indigestion treatment
Your local pharmacist can also offer you advice and guidance on the best treatment for you. Pharmacists are available on every high street and in supermarkets with many open evenings and weekends.
For further information on how to treat common winter illnesses visit www.nhs.uk
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE CORONAVIRUS VACCINATION PROGRAMME
COVID 19 - vaccine Programme
Headlines last week spoke of “Covid vaccine by Xmas from GPs”. What does this mean for me?
Whilst we certainly would want to be involved in any vaccination campaign, we don’t have any information ourselves yet and contrary to media reports no ‘deals’ have yet been done, but we expect more information soon.
Will you be getting paid to vaccinate us?
GPs hold a contract with the NHS to provide certain services. The money from that contract pays for the building, the heating and electricity, the nurses, receptionists and staff, clinical equipment and a variety of other expenses that go with providing services to patients.
If the government wants GPs to do something new, (e.g. deliver a new vaccine) it will buy that service from the GP to pay for the extra staff, clinics and hours to cover expenses. It is very unlikely that GPs will make a profit out of the Covid vaccine. Based on current information they may make a loss, but recognise that it is the right thing to do for their patients and communities.
But what we don’t know, if what we might have to consider stop doing, to free up time to provide this vaccination service, given that we are working at 150% compared with this time last year, according to our LMC’s survey.
But isn’t it just like a flu jab?
No, not by a long stretch.
Flu jabs are delivered in their own little syringes, and kept refrigerated. They can safely last in a vaccine fridge for several months. We can keep them and use them, either in dedicated flu clinics or opportunistically if we see you for something else. We can run the clinics a bit like a conveyor belt, as I’m sure many of you will have experienced. We can get a large number of people vaccinated in a very short period of time. People then leave the practice immediately. Once a year, job done.
So what’s different about a new Covid vaccine compared with the flu jab?
These new vaccines are not yet ready, and we don’t know when they will be. They are completely different. They need to be stored frozen in special dry ice, colder than a home freezer (about -70°C). Surgeries don’t have those freezers. So they will be delivered whilst they are defrosting for use. However, they can be stored in a vaccine fridge for a few days before expiring. They don’t come in their own little syringes. We will have to carefully draw them up from a main vial, dilute and mix them for each individual, which will probably take from start to finish about 20 minutes, needing two members of staff (one to draw up, one to check - this is established safe practise with these preparations to minimise error). Once the patient has received their Covid-jab they must wait for 15 minutes to ensure no serious reaction -these vaccines are brand new, and whilst there is a huge regulatory framework to ensure their safety, we will have to take extra care. This in itself will be difficult as we have to maintain social distancing and we don’t know how quickly these clinics will take place. It will be nowhere near as quick as a flu clinic.
Will this be at my local GP surgery?
To begin with, NHS England thinks that areas will have one central Covid-jab centre. This might be in a local practice. It might be yours, it might not. You may have to travel. How the chosen centre will continue to look after its patients ongoing and urgent health needs, we don’t yet know. No details of those plans have been shared yet.
Is it just one jab?
No. You will need two. They will be 3-4 weeks apart but you must not have had any other vaccinations in the previous week.
How many patients will get it the vaccine when it’s ready?
Government says it wants 40 million people vaccinated (that’s 80 million appointments). Putting that into context, every year there are 40 million A&E attendances and 360 million GP appointments. This is going to take a long time. There are no spare GPs or practice nurses. We don’t yet know how we are going to plan for this on top of what we are doing now - managing hundreds of acute and chronic patients every day: on the phone, over video and being brought into the surgery by invitation.
Will it be available by Christmas?
No one knows. But if it is, there will be a very small number of doses and we think the Government might suggest protecting Care Home residents first.
Whatever you read in the paper or online, don’t forget - this is going to be very difficult. We need to make sure there is a safe system and a safe vaccine first.
Even when it comes, it won’t prevent Covid, it will only make its effects milder. So please bear with us - we are in the dark too.
And there is still every reason to think ‘Hands, Space, Safe’ for a long time to come.
People at highest risk from Coronavirus
Full list of those falling into the extremely vulnerable group:
- solid organ transplant recipients
- people with specific cancers
- people with cancer who are undergoing active chemotherapy or radical radiotherapy for lung cancer
- people with cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma who are at any stage of treatment
- people having immunotherapy or other continuing antibody treatments for cancer
- people having other targeted cancer treatments which can affect the immune system, such as protein kinase inhibitors or PARP inhibitors.
- people who have had bone marrow or stem cell transplants in the last 6 months, or who are still taking immunosuppression drugs.
- people with severe respiratory conditions including all cystic fibrosis, severe asthma and severe COPD
- people with rare diseases and inborn errors of metabolism that significantly increase the risk of infections (such as SCID, homozygous sickle cell disease)
- people on immunosuppression therapies sufficient to significantly increase risk of infection
- women who are pregnant and who also have significant heart disease, congenital or acquired
SERVICE CHANGES / AVAILABILITY
PATIENTS WITH DENTAL PROBLEMS - EMERGENCY GUIDANCE
Patients often attend GP practice with dental problems. GPs are not able to fully assess and treat dental problems. Treating patients with dental problems is not a GP responsiblity, even if a patient is not registered with a dentist.
If you have a toothache or other dental issues you will need to contact your local dentist or telephone NHS 111 if your usual dental surgery is closed or you are not registered with a dentist.
Please use the following following link to: How to find an NHS Dentist
EAR IRRIGATION - Service currently unavailable
Unfortunately we are currently unable to offer Ear Irrigation services, please find below a number of places which offer ear irrigation privately:
Cambridge Clear Ear
Kelsey Kerridge, Cambridge
01480 300 955
01945 466 386
£25 / £40
£40 / £70
Hearing Healthcare Centre
01223 360 700
01638 593 113
Clear Ear Clinic
Spire Hospital Cambridge
Please note that this is a sample of providers, and not an exhaustive list. Prices are correct as of June 2018 and are subject to change.
Riverside Practice "COVID 19" - Coronavirus Patient Information
Following guidance from Public Health, NHS England and the Cambridgeshire LMC (Local Medical Council) we would like to advise you of the following changes to the services provided by the Riverside Practice.
- We are keeping ALL face to face contact to a bare minimum
- Patients calling to request an appointment or home visit will be booked a telephone appointment by the reception team, with a GP or Advanced Nurse Practitioner. At this time you will not be offered a face to face appointment.
- If appropriate care or advice can be achieved during the consultation and in line with the needs of the patient you will not be required to attend the practice.
- If the clinician feels that a face to face appointment is needed and there are no COVID 19 infection concerns, an appointment will be arranged for you to attend the surgery.
- To reduce the risk of infection, please attend your appointment alone unless a parent/guardian or carer is required.
ENTERING THE BUILDING
- Patients will only be able to gain access to the reception area one at a time.
- Please remain in the foyer until called through
- Please remain at least 2mts/3 foot from anyone else who may be in the foyer.
- When approaching the reception desk, please remain behind the black & yellow tape on the floor and in front of the information board.
- Please do not be offended if you are asked to take a step back
CHRONIC DISEASE & ONGOING CARE MANAGEMENT
If you receive ongoing care from the practice, this will continue and you will be contacted by a member of the team to advise you of your appointment.
MEDICATION – REPEAT & ACUTE
- Please could all patients with online access “nominate a pharmacy”, this will allow for prescriptions to be sent directly to the pharmacy of your choice. You will then not need to attend the practice.
- The walk in Prescribing Clinic has been suspended.
- If you have any queries with your medication or prescriptions please call: 01354 661922 Opt: 2, between the hours of: 9.30 – 13.00 & 14.00 – 15.00 only.
- Please post all repeat prescription requests through the letter box, or in the repeat prescription box located in the foyer.
- We are unable to provide prescriptions for over the counter medication that is in short supply.
ON-LINE ACCESS - MEDICATION ORDERING
- We will be allowing registration for on-line services to be activated over the phone.
- 4 identity questions will be asked and an email address will need to be provided.
- A verification email will be sent and this will need to be verified by the patient.
- Log in details and passwords will be sent once verification has been achieved.
- On receipt of the log in details please allow 24hrs before attempting to log in.
- When logged in, please “nominate a pharmacy” before ordering your repeat prescription
- If there are any special requests please enter these into the comments/notes box.
- Alternatively download the NHS app - https://www.nhs.uk/apps-library/nhs-app/
- If following a telephone triage you are requested to supply a specimen, containers can be collected at the reception desk, they will be placed in an envelope clearly labelled with your initials.
- On returning the specimen, please make sure that you have labelled the container clearly and correctly with your name and date of birth.
- Please place the specimen in the specimen box located on the left when entering the practice.
- If you need to collect a repeat prescription or Med 3, for on-going conditions or non-virus related conditions, from the practice, please adhere to the above criteria on entering the building.
- Please state your name and what you are collecting
- The receptionist will place the item to the far right of the desk and will move back ready for you to collect.
FRUSTRATIONS & CONFUSION
We understand that changes can cause frustration and that these can be confusing. At this time we are unable to offer the same level of service and access as normal, but hopefully with the information provided above we can alleviate some of this confusion and anxiety. However, these measures have been implemented to keep us all safe and in line with specific guidance.
The Riverside Practice in line with the NHS “Zero Tolerance” Policy, will not tolerate any verbally aggressive or abusive behaviour to any member of the team and if this type of behaviour presents itself, it will be dealt with accordingly.
PLEASE HELP US TO HELP YOU AND THE STAFF OF RIVERSIDE TO STAY SAFE.
If you suspect you have Coronavirus, please logon to the NHS 111 website for the latest advice on: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ .
We appreciate this is a challenging time for everyone and we hope to keep all our patients and staff well.
The Riverside Practice thanks you for your continued support
Coronavirus and your wellbeing
You might be worried about coronavirus (also known as COVID-19) and how it could affect your life. This may include being asked to stay at home or avoid other people.
This might feel difficult or stressful. But there are lots of things you can try that could help your wellbeing.
Please click here to be redirected to the Mind website
Welcome to The Riverside Medical Practice
The Riverside Practice in March provides the highest quality health care from modern purpose-built premises in Marylebone Road, March.
The premises are designed and equipped to meet the needs of our patients.This includes wheelchair access to all rooms, disabled toilets and a hearing loop in reception. A wheelchair for patient use is available at reception. In the car park there are designated disabled parking spaces.
Our Doctors, Advanced Nurse Practitioners, Nurses and all our other staff are dedicated to offering a professional service.
With our website helping us to keep all our patients up to date with news and information about our practice.
The new, simple and secure way to access a range of NHS services on your smartphone or tablet.
What the NHS App does
Use the NHS App to:
- check your symptoms
- find out what to do when you need help urgently
- book and manage appointments at your GP surgery
- order repeat prescriptions
- view your GP medical record securely
- register to be an organ donor
- choose how the NHS uses your data