GPs & Practices under pressure...
The past few months have been some of the busiest the practice has experienced with demand and workload continuing to increase. This is not just happening at Queen Edith’s, but is reflected in general practices county and nationwide. Our Local Medical Committee (Cambs LMC, an independent, statutory organisation that supports and represents GPs) has done some research into this, and the numbers speak for themselves:
Across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough in March 2021:
• Number of appointments: 461,859 (equivalent to 46% of population)
• Number of Face-to-Face appointments: 258,691 (56%)
• Patients seen on the same day: 54%
• Patients seen in less than a week: 84%
• Patients seen in less than 14 days: 92%
In addition, over 90,000 Covid vaccinations were delivered by Cambridgeshire & Peterborough GPs & their Practice teams in March meaning that a total of half a million patient appointments happened that month. This huge number is not just due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, but also the major NHS backlog of patients waiting for treatment. Most worryingly this demand is combined with the lowest numbers of GPs per capita in decades. The LMC concludes that:
“this is unsustainable, unsafe and is putting patientcare at risk. Practices are already working well beyond their safe daily limits. GPs and their practices, with the support of General Practitioners Committee England, and Cambs LMC, should continue to deliver care to their patients in the way they determine that best protects and cares for their population.”
Cases of the Delta variant in the UK, are rising exponentially. We must take all steps possible to deliver care that is safe for our patients and protects our staff. Social distancing and infection protection and control measures are still in force and, like many surgeries, we have a restricted waiting area. The only safe way to proceed is to continue to triage everyone; it is not yet safe for patients to walk into our building without a prior assessment.
This is why we are still operating a telephone-first system for all GP appointments.
When you contact the practice you will be offered a telephone appointment with a GP initially, and if after discussion with the GP it is felt to be clinically necessary to see you face-to-face, you will be offered an appointment for this.
Please be aware that we have made this decision to protect our patients and our staff. Our Reception team are working in line with this policy, and are only able to offer telephone appointments in the first instance. Our hard-working Reception team have faced an increased amount of verbal abuse about this over the last few weeks, which is unacceptable.
Once again, we would ask our patients to please be mindful of the ongoing pandemic, and we insist that all of our staff are treated with the dignity and respect that they deserve.
We will not tolerate anything else.
1.06.21 (Updated 25.6.21)
General Practice Data for Planning and Research (GPDPR)
From 1st September 2021 Queen Edith’s, like all GP surgeries, will legally have to allow sharing of patient data with NHS digital for health and social care planning and research purposes. We are not allowed by law to refuse to share the information.
NHS Digital will also collect information from other healthcare providers, and will be able to publish and share this data. NHS Digital hope to use this data to help NHS planning of local services and to share with research organisations.
You can find out more about how and why NHS Digital want to use your data here:
NHS Digital will not collect patients’ names or addresses. Any other data that could directly identify patients (such as NHS Number, date of birth, full postcode) is replaced with unique codes which are produced by de-identification software before the data is shared with NHS Digital.
This process is called pseudonymisation and means that patients will not be identified directly in the data. NHS Digital will be able to use the software to convert the unique codes back to data that could directly identify patients in certain circumstances, and where there is a valid legal reason.
As a patient you can decide whether or not you wish your data to be shared, and you can tell us not to share your data with NHS Digital. This is known as a Type 1 opt out:
• This is to opt out of GP data sharing with GPDPR.
• Your information will not be shared from our clinical system.
• If you opt out before the end of August 2021, NHS Digital will not extract any of your data.
• You can opt out at a later stage, and no further data extractions will then take place.
• You can opt in again at any stage.
• You can use this online form to indicate your type 1 opt out: https://www.nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters/manage-your-choice/
• You will find the relevant paper forms here (and on our website): https://digital.nhs.uk/your-data/opting-out-of-data-sharing
• Forms can be posted to or brought in to the practice or can be emailed to us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
COVID-19 Vaccination programme
Our Primary Care Network are no longer offering covid vaccinations so the practice is unable to book any further appointments for these.
If you are due your first or second covid vaccine you will need to book direct via nhs.uk/covidvaccination or by calling 119 and will be offered an appointment at one of the mass vaccination centres.
If you are not eligible yet, please wait to be contacted. The NHS will let you know when it's your turn to have the vaccine.
Whether you have had the vaccine or not, please continue to follow all the guidance in place to control the virus and save lives.
Further information on the COVID-19 vaccination programme, including frequently asked questions and patient information leaflets here https://www.cambridgeshireandpeterboroughccg.nhs.uk/news-and-events/latest-news/covid-19-national-vaccination-programme/.
DoctorLink is an online triage and advice tool which helps the patient see the right member of the practice team in the appropriate timeframe based on clinical need.
With DoctorLink you can check your symptoms, book appointments, request fit/sick certificates & request repeat prescriptions. Sign-up is simple, just click the link below to create your account, or download the DoctorLink app (IOS & Android):
For the most up-to-date information on the Coronavirus Pandemic please go to:
Have you got the NHS App?
24/7, wherever you are, the app lets you conveniently order repeat prescriptions, view your GP medical record, and quickly check symptoms.
You can also book, cancel and track appointments at your GP surgery with ease.* And access to NHS 111 online means no more wondering if you need urgent attention.
It’s free and owned by the NHS so you know your personal data is always secure. You can find it in in Google and Apple app stores.
Your NHS, your way. Download the NHS App.
For further information click here: NHS App
About our practice
Our Doctors are committed to providing high quality NHS medical care for individuals and families in a friendly and caring environment.
You may choose to see any of the doctors, but we believe we can provide the best care if you keep to the same one. We work closely together as a team and are confident that you will receive equally caring attention from any of us when your usual doctor is not available. All doctors provide a full range of medical services, including maternity medical services, minor surgery, contraceptive services and child health surveillance.
We strongly support the NHS policy on zero tolerance. Anyone attending the surgery who abuses the GPs, staff or other patients be it verbally, physically or in any threatening manner whatsoever, will risk removal from the practice list. In extreme cases we may summon the police to remove offenders from the practice premises.
Please see the link to the latest edition o the quarterly newsletter produced by our Patient Participation Group (PPG) below. Head to the page entitled 'Patient Participation Group to see previous editions!
PPG Newsletter 26 - June 2021.pdf
Newsletter 25 - March 21.pdf
More evening and weekend GP appointments available
All our patients now have access to more pre-bookable evening and weekend GP and nurse appointments.
To book an appointment, contact our reception team who will be able to book an appointment for you, or direct you to where you can do this online.
Appointments may not be at this practice, but if you talk to our receptionists, they will help you find the right service and at a time that is convenient.
Click on the link below to log in to SystmOnline.
PLEASE NOTE: You will need a username and password to access the online service. For more information about how to do this visit our 'Online Access to your medical Records' page: