By Dr. P. Leftwick - 10th July 2020 6:10am
Audlem Medical Practice Update — 9.7.2020
As we take the first tentative steps out of lockdown we would like to take the opportunity to thank all our patients who have supported each other and their vulnerable or shielding neighbours during this difficult time. We would also like to thank all of our staff who have helped us to remain open and continue to provide care through this most difficult time — we have a community and practice team to be proud of and hope we continue to see more of the best of everyone.
As we start to return to more routine work we continue to follow Government guidance and ask for your patience over the coming weeks. We do appreciate many people may have health problems they have left for a number of weeks due to COVID19 and we are doing all we can to catch up as quickly as possible. We have seen an increase in calls to the practice of almost 50% in the last week with nearly 200 calls last Monday alone, so please be patient as our receptionists are doing all they can to answer your call as quickly as possible. To help avoid long delays on the phone we ask:
1) If you require an urgent appointment (to speak to a doctor on the day) please call the practice as soon as possible after 8.30 in the morning.
2) If your call is about a routine matter please call the practice after 11am
3) Please remember we do not take repeat prescription requests over the telephone
Ongoing social distancing and best practice advice does mean that we continue to have to telephone triage all appointments, but please be assured that if the clinician you speak to feels you need a face to face assessment at the surgery then that is what you will get. To maintain social distancing at the practice we have had to alter our appointment structure and this means a significant reduction in capacity for services such as blood tests. We have taken on extra staff hours to try to mitigate this but please understand if your routine test is some weeks away — we continue to prioritise urgent clinical tests and have separate arrangements for our shielded patients.
We continue to expand our practice team, via our membership of the Nantwich and Rural (us and Wrenbury!) Primary Care Network (PCN), which has been lead to great effect by our own Dr Holden. We now have directly bookable appointments at the practice with Tony Williams, an experienced physiotherapist, and Michael Willcocks, a social prescriber who is with us each week to support our patients and signpost to other agencies who may be able to help. We now have our practice pharmacist Dan Widdowfield, who is with us regularly to help with any medication questions or problems you may have — please speak to our receptionist if you would like Dan to contact you.
As summer gets into full swing our thoughts of course turn to the 'flu season!' At present we are having to plan to deliver our annual 'flu clinics in a very different way to take account of social distancing and thus it is likely that for this year at least you will need to book an appointment in advance and attend in a narrow time slot — we will of course keep you updated as soon as we have more details.
With very best wishes to all our patients for a safe gradual return to a more sociable existence
Dr Pete Leftwick, Dr Nancy Verso and Dr Dave Holden
Sunday 2nd Aug
Saturday 1st Aug
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