Astra Zeneca Covid Vaccine - Rare Side Effects - Summary
- The risk of a blood clot after Covid vaccination is about the same as on a long-haul flight, Matt Hancock, Health Secretary says
- Under-30s in the UK are to be offered an alternative Covid jab to the AstraZeneca vaccine
- There are more than enough Moderna and Pfizer vaccines for under-30s, the health secretary says
- The European regulator says unusual blood clots should be listed as very rare side effects of the AZ vaccine
Please be advised that we will be contacting any of our patients under 30 who are currently booked in to have the Astra Zeneca vaccine so that they can have an informed conversation with a GP to decide whether to have this vaccine or not. If not an alternative will be offered (Pfizer or Moderna) although we may not be able to offer an appointment date straight away due to supply levels.
If I’ve had a dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, what should I do?
If you have already had your first Astra Zeneca vaccine you should continue with your second dose appointment. You will not be able to switch vaccines at this stage. If you are under 30 and have had a jab, it means you’re at higher risk because of a health condition, or perhaps because you work in health or social care. That means the risk/benefit balance for you is probably still in favour of taking the vaccine.
Am I at risk from a clot after the second shot?
If you are over 30 and have a vaccine appointment for your first or second dose please do not cancel your appointment. You will not get a choice of which vaccine to have unless there is a medical reason for you to have an alternative. If you have had your first dose already you will not be able to switch vaccines. It is your choice if you want to decline a first or second vaccine however you should balance and weigh the risks for you as a an individual and please be advised you may not be offered an alternative appointment.
Please follow this link for important information to keep you safe while isolating at home: https://www.england.nhs.uk/coronavirus/primary-care/isolation/
Or click the below link to view the information leaflet
Important information to keep you safe while isolating at home
COVID-19 Vaccination Survey
The survey can be accessed here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfwqY2Oss6QoVv5Ex8It7Q9-CMzx5uJZojALDtgwqUjo-gC9Q/viewform
Please consider spending a few moments completing this National Institute for Health Research questionnaire about COVID-19 vaccination.
What is this survey about?
COVID-19 has quickly become a major disease across the world. It has led to researchers from across the world to find a vaccine. A vaccine teaches your immune system how to create antibodies that protect you from an infectious disease such as COVID-19. Vaccines are used as a way to prevent disease, rather than treat a disease once you may have caught it.
This aim of this survey is to help NIHR better understand the views of people in the West Midlands and across the country in relation to vaccines. We would like to hear the views from everyone. Your views on vaccines and whether you would consider taking part in vaccine related research studies. This survey will also help us to explore how we can promote vaccines and how we can help everyone to take part in vaccine research studies. The data from this survey will also help to target education and public health campaigns in the West Midlands and across the country.
All the information you provide will remain anonymous and will be stored securely. The information you provide will only be used for research purpose.
Who should complete the questionnaire?
This survey is for everyone living in the West Midlands and across the country.
Return of Popular GP to South Hermitage
We are pleased to advise that Dr Victoria Gabinet is returning to work for us following the successful completion of her GP qualifications. Her appointments are already bookable.
New Text Messaging Facility
We are now using Chain SMS to message patients!
Chain SMS is a system which allows us to easily send text messages to patients. It means we can be much more proactive with our communications, messaging you quickly and securely, so you are not waiting around to hear
Some examples of how we might use it:-
- Reminders or notifications (eg prescription ready, check up due, referral status)
- Lab result information where follow-up or repeat tests are required
- Responding to simple queries (eg if you had a quick question about your medication)
- Letting you know we tried to call
- Sending you advice at the end of consultation
The practice name will always be at the bottom of the message. You will not be able to reply to them. Please help us help you by keeping your number up to date.
If you do not want us to contact you this way, please contact reception.
OPTING OUT OF THIS SERVICE MAY ALSO STOP YOU FROM RECEIVING APPOINTMENT TEXT REMINDERS.
MIDWIFERY and PODIATRY SERVICE CHANGES
Unfortunately, our Midwifery service will be finishing here at South Hermitage on 12th September 19. Patients should contact the Midwifery service directly to book an appointment at the hospital following this date on
01743 261085 (option 2); you will need to quote your NHS number.
Podiatry are also stopping their services at our practice. Patients will now have to attend Princess House or Royal Shrewsbury Hospital for these appointments.
Please contact the Podiatry Office on 01743 277681 should you have any questions.
SOCIAL MEDIA UPDATE
We are now on Facebook and Twitter!
We will be using these channels to communicate news, NHS campaigns and other surgery info. Clicking the below links will take you directly to our pages!
Visit us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter
2/5/19 FAX MACHINE NO LONGER AVAILABLE
Due to technical problems with our fax machine which cannot be resolved we no longer send or receive fax messages. Along with most surgeries in the locality we had planned to phase out our use of the fax machine but due to the technical problems the timing of this has been forced upon us. Anyone needing to transmit electronic data should use our admin email account firstname.lastname@example.org which is a secure email account.
Changes to Classification of Gabapentin and Pregabalin Medication
From 1 April 2019, pregabalin and gabapentin will be reclassified as Schedule 3 controlled drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001, and Class C of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.
What this means is that patients will only be able to receive a 1 month supply at a time. Once a prescription is written by a doctor the prescription is only valid for 1 month and the medication must be collected from the pharmacy within this time.
The change in regulations also means it will no longer be possible to send prescriptions electronically to a pharmacy. Patients can continue to order their prescriptions in the same way as usual but the prescription for this item will be printed at the surgery and will need to be collected and taken to the pharmacy. By speaking to their pharmacy it may be possible for them to collect the prescription from the surgery on behalf of patients.
In anticipation of the change in regulations these changes have already been made to the prescribing system by the company that manages the electronic patient records and will affect all future supplies of this medicine with immediate effect.
For patients who use gabapentin or pregabalin we would be very grateful if they could request any prescriptions in plenty of time, to help us manage the transition process.
Please contact us or speak to your pharmacy if any further information is required about this matter.
Extended Access – Local GP practices working together to offer more convenient appointment times for patients
As from 1st October 2018, we became part of a network of practices (known as ‘hubs’) in Shropshire, working together to offer patients ‘Extended Access’ to pre-bookable appointments - in the evenings, at the weekend and during bank holidays.
Part of the national agenda by NHS England, Extended Access means patients are able to make pre-bookable appointments to see a GP, practice nurse, or other qualified healthcare professional, at a time which may be more convenient for them.
In Shropshire, local practices are working together in a network of ‘hubs’ to provide this service. The ‘hubs’ will take turns to provide the Extended Access appointments to patients. This means patients could be offered an appointment at their own surgery or at a nearby practice in the local area (part of the hub). Patients will be advised about appointment location at time of booking, enabling them to make an informed choice about their where and when they access care.
Locally the pre-bookable appointments will be available as follows:
- Weekday evenings (Monday to Friday) appointments between 6.30pm and 8pm (at a local area hub)
- Saturdays & Sundays ring your own GP surgery or 0333 222 6649 appointments between 8:30am and 12:30pm (at a local area hub)
- Bank holidays - RING 0333 222 6649 appointments between 8.30am and 12.30pm (at a single site in central Shrewsbury)
Arranging a pre-bookable evening, weekend or bank holiday appointment is easy to do - patients simply need to contact us, during normal opening hours, and speak to the practice receptionist or a member of the practice team who will be able to help. Appointments may not be with your registered GP
but will be with a GP or other qualified healthcare professional.
Cervical smear and NHS health check appointments are available through the extended access service - patients should just ring their own GP surgery and ask the receptionist for one of these appointments in an extended hours session.
Some additional weekend appointments and bank holiday appointments can also be arranged by ringing 0333 222 6649.
Extended Access adds to the existing range of healthcare services already available in Shropshire to help patients, including pharmacists, NHS 111, the walk-in centre, minor injury units, and A&E (which is there 24/7 for life threatening serious emergencies only).
It isn’t always necessary to see a GP for minor and common conditions - find out more about how to self-care for these types of conditions on the
Self-care section of the NHS Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group website (https://shropshireccg.nhs.uk/health-advice/selfcare/).
It is important to be aware of how long common conditions should take to clear up and always seek medical advice if you are unsure or if you feel
it is an emergency.
Extended Access came into effect from 1st October 2018.
Information to help patients understand more about Extended Access is available on the NHS England website, visit https://www.england.nhs.uk/gp/gpfv/redesign/improving-access/.
South Hermitage Surgery is now an Armed Forces Veteran friendly accredited GP practice!
This has been issued by the Royal College of General Practitioners, who are working alongside NHS England to accredit practices as ‘Veteran Friendly’. We have volunteered to be part of this initiative to further increase the care for our patients.
A veteran is anyone who served for at least one day in the Armed Forces, whether regular or reserve, ie “ex service personnel”.
It is estimated that there are 3 million veterans in the UK, with 18,000 service people moving back into civilian life every year.
Our aim is to identify any veterans who are registered patients at South Hermitage Surgery. Please let us know if you are a veteran so we can update your medical records.
PRIVACY NOTICE - Find out what patient data we hold and what we do with it. PLUS - how to OPT OUT
Being transparent and providing accessible information to patients about how we will use your personal information is a key element of the Data Protection Act 1998 and the EU General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR). This Privacy Notice reminds you of of your rights in respect of this legislation and how South Hermitage Surgery will use your information for lawful purposes in order to deliver your care and the effective management of the local NHS system. It also contains information on consent, and how to opt-out.
Please contact the Practice Manager if you have any concerns regarding the notice, or how we use your data.
BRAND NEW PHONE SYSTEM AND SURGERY WI-FI
On 23/7/18 we implemented a brand new phone system in the surgery! Please bear with us during the first few days as we get used to this.
Another addition to our surgery alongside the new phone system is Wi-Fi—of course accessible by our patients from the same date as above. Simply follow the onscreen instructions to get yourself logged in.
We are also currently working on improving our social media presence. Updates soon to follow.
SOUTH HERMITAGE COMPASSIONATE COMMUNITIES (Co-Co)
For the past few months I have been gearing up to launch the South Hermitage Compassionate Community project which started with our Open Meeting at the end of June. We had a great bunch of people attend on a very hot Tuesday evening; it was fantastic to see such a positive turn out.
Co-Co is about the community coming together to offer companionship to one another. The project is a Severn Hospice initiative and it was amazing to have the brains behind the idea, Paul Cronin, come and speak at our meeting.
At the end there was an opportunity to leave contact details for anyone who was interested in continuing the process and finding out more! We are absolutely delighted that the majority of people left their details and will carry on with the next step, which is to attend an information session run by the hospice.
We are welcoming anyone to get in touch who wants to find out more about volunteering or helping with the organisational side of things.
I look forward to hearing from you!
Community & Care Co-ordinator
UPDATED PATIENT ACCESS WEBSITE AND APP
If you are a user of Patient Access, you may already have noticed a change in the appearance of both the website and the mobile app.
The new update promises a change for the better, making Patient Access more user friendly and more efficient.
The update requires no action from the patient. Simply use your existing User ID and Password and you're good to go. If you have forgotten your user ID or any other details, you can simply use the 'forgotten' buttons to retrieve these details. There is also a brand new 'Support Centre' feature, where all the most common problems can be looked up easily.
REINSTATED EAR IRRIGATION SERVICE
We are now pleased to announce that our ear irrigation service has been reinstated after a brief break.
We want to ensure that patients who feel they should have their ears irrigated are fully informed of all the risks involved and know how to prepare adequately for their appointment. We have therefore compiled an information leaflet about ear wax and combined this with a consent form (see attached).
Anyone wishing to have their ears irrigated should read this leaflet, follow the guidelines and complete the checklist about suitability for an appointment. There are certain circumstances where it is not suitable to perform ear irrigated. However, if an appointment is required, patients should contact the surgery to book an appointment with the relevant clinician*
*Patients who have previously had their ears irrigated can book an appointment with either Anna Treherne, Health Care Assistant or one of our practice nurses.
*Patients who have never had their ears irrigated before should book an appointment with a practice nurse.
The completed form should be brought along to the appointment.(see section Services / Ear Irrigation)
SHINGLES VACCINE AVAILABLE FOR ALL PATIENTS AGED 70,71,72, 73, 78 and 79 ON 1st SEPTEMBER 2018
This year patients become eligible for the shingles vaccine as soon as they reach the age of 70 or 78 but we are not allowed to administer the vaccine before then.
Book a nurse appointment with our receptionists if you are eligible for the vaccination.
Any eligible patients can receive their shingles vaccine at the same appointment as their flu vaccine, HOWEVER, they require a special appointment slot with the doctor during our Saturday clinics so would need to ring the surgery to ask our reception staff to arrange this. PLEASE DO NOT BOOK A DUAL APPOINTMENT ONLINE AS THE NURSES WILL NOT BE ABLE TO DO THIS DURING THE SATURDAY CLINICS - ONLY THE DOCTORS HAVE BEEN SCHEDULED TO DO THIS.
AUG 2018 - PRESCRIPTION ORDERING DIRECT (POD) WENT LIVE
From January 2018 the facility to request prescriptions by phone to our surgery staff was replaced by the on-line service.
From August 2018 the POD service became accessible for patients wishing to order repeat prescriptions by phone. Patients can ring 0333 3583 509 and the team of staff will process their prescription requests for collection from their pharmacies. Patients should allow 4 working days from request before collecting items from pharmacies.
ELECTRONIC PRESCRIBING SERVICE (EPS2)
From 1/4/19 NHS England requires all patients on repeat medication to nominate a regular pharmacy.
This helpful service saves the NHS large amounts of money due to its streamlined processes.
Patients nominate a regular Pharmacy of their choice and all prescriptions are then forwarded directly to this Pharmacy electronically. This saves the patients needing to attend surgery to collect their prescriptions.
If you have not already signed up, please see leaflets/poster or ask in reception for more information about the new Electronic Prescription Service.
NAMED ACCOUNTABLE GP
All patients now have a named GP. The main purpose of this role is to reassure you that there is one GP in our surgery who is responsible for overseeing your care, that they will work with other health & social care professionals to meet your needs and that you have access to a health check if you want one. You can choose which GP you want, or we can allocate one to you. You still have the right to see any of our GPs, not just your named one.
If you wish to know the name of your named GP then ask any member of our team.