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COVID Update - July 2021 Posted on 22 Mar 2022

Dear Patient,

Firstly, we would like to say thank-you for all your patience and co-operation over one of the most trying years for the NHS.

Moving forward, the practice will still ask you to wear a mask when visiting our surgery for appointments. This is to allow us to continue working and stay open, through minimising the spread of COVID-19. Social distancing is not always possible during a consultation and the Clinician may be in very close proximity to you, therefore a mask will act as the best protection against COVID-19. Cases in the area are high and therefore we must continue to protect our patients and staff as much as possible.

We are adopting a stepped approach to re-opening the surgery. Our doors will remained locked at the moment, although our waiting room will be open for patients with booked appointments. Our reception team will greet you at the window and come and unlock the doors, check your temperature and ask you to sanitise your hands, before asking you to take a seat in the waiting room. If you have a query which you wish to discuss with our reception team at the front desk, rather than the window, please let us know and we will unlock the door. Our waiting room is cleaned down regularly and all clinical rooms are cleaned between patients. Our clinicians and staff will continue to use PPE.

The majority of our GP appointments will begin with a telephone triage or online consult triage by the GP. An appointment will be then be made for examinations, observations etc. with the relevant clinician.  This is to avoid re-current visits to the surgery. During pre-covid times, it was usual for patients to see the GP and then come back for a blood test etc., however now, with an initial triage system in place we can aim to complete all observations and examinations in one visit. Our reception team have been trained on appointment triage and will book initial face to face appointments where appropriate.

We hope you understand our approach to re-opening and please know, we are as keen as everyone to return to life as normal, however we have to work to minimise the still prominent risk of COVID-19 for our patients and staff. One can assess the risk and choose to go to social events etc., however coming to the surgery often is not a choice and therefore we have to provide the highest level of safety for all. We will regularly be reviewing our stepped approach and will adapt accordingly.

Thank you again for your continued patience.

Simmondley Medical Practice

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