Coronavirus / COVID-1
A Letter From The Practice
We hope you are all managing ok with the continuing lockdown and that those of you who have been personally affected by Covid are coping ok.
The lockdown seems to be effective in keeping the spread of the disease down in the community in general, but there are ongoing cases in care homes so we would request that everyone who has an elderly relative or cares for one, is meticulous in social distancing and particularly hand hygiene. There is an excellent volunteer support network available if anyone needs help, accessible on email@example.com
The continued lockdown is hard psychologically, and we would encourage everyone to take some exercise if they are able, and also would recommend reducing or stopping smoking or alcohol and weight loss if relevant, as there is a lot of evidence now that smokers (including vaping) and overweight patients, are at higher risk of complications. For those that aren't able to go out, there are online workouts such as Joe Wicks, or for those that prefer something more gentle, online Tai Chi sessions available for free online.
For any patients that are having symptoms or are looking after someone who has symptoms, please be aware that unlike flu or other viral illnesses, that the disease seems to run a fairly mild course initially and then can worsen dramatically after a week or so, as seems to have happened to Boris Johnson. If you are feeling short of breath or worse at any stage, please contact the surgery.
As a practice we are still open for business, although are trying to do virtually everything by phone or video consult, according to government instructions, to minimise risk to you and to us. Please do contact us if you are unwell or have concerns.
In terms of what else we are doing to help control this disease:
- We are part of a national surveillance program, to allow the NHS to monitor the epidemic
- We are continuing to work with our colleagues in the Axe Valley to support each other with staff where needed
- We continue to support the out of hours GP service, to ensure you continue to receive care at nights and weekends, with Dr Dove working in Honiton and triaging and Dr Daniels working in Honiton and also the Covid isolation Pod at RD&E.
- We have applied to take part in future treatment trials, and will let you know if this starts locally We would also like to thank everyone who has donated PPE to our staff, this is amazing and a huge help.
We would also like to thank all the carers working in patients homes and carehomes for all they are doing. This is an incredibly stressful time for you all and you are working under huge pressure, and your continued efforts make our job a lot easier. You are the true heroes of this epidemic.
Townsend House Medical Centre
During the coronavirus pandemic, our staff have been working hard to ensure that all patients who need urgent care – not just those with coronavirus – have been able to get it. To avoid unnecessary contact, some non-urgent appointments and surgeries have been postponed and others delivered differently using technology.
We will continue to ask patients to attend face-to-face services only when it is really necessary, and where it can be done safely without putting our patients, the public or our staff at greater risk of catching coronavirus. Where possible, appointments will continue to be offered using remote services such as a video or phone consultation.
What does this mean for me?
If you need to attend a hospital for planned (non-emergency) care, you will be asked to take some steps to ensure everyone’s safety.
- Admissions (including day surgery): you and your household will be asked to isolate at home for 14 days prior. You may be asked to complete a test within 72 hours before going to the hospital. If these steps aren’t possible, your care team may decide to reschedule your admission. This will be determined by your care team using clinical judgement and in consultation with you. Our admissions team will give you all the information you need when booking you in.
- Outpatient appointments: you should only attend your outpatient appointment if you have no symptoms of coronavirus. Remember to comply with normal social distancing requirements while at the hospital or service.
Currently shielding because you are at high risk of coronavirus complications? Extra protection will be put in place and discussed with you in advance.
If you start to show coronavirus symptoms or test positive while in hospital, you will be immediately isolated.
If you are going to a care home or hospice after being in hospital you will be tested for coronavirus before you leave hospital. If the result of the test is positive, the care home will make arrangements to prevent the virus from spreading to other residents or staff, following national guidance.
All planned care is subject to developments in the response to the coronavirus pandemic and appointments may need to be rescheduled.
If you have any questions or would like further advice, please contact 01297 20616.
Every Mind Matters
It's really important to look after your Mental Health and in the current climate, this might be something that you are struggling with. Every Mind Matters is an NHS resource that is full of practical tips and advice to help you look after you Mental Health and wellbeing.
You can visit the site by clicking the link below:
Children and the Coronavirus
Whilst our children are versatile little miracles, they may be struggling with understanding what is happening in the world today. The following resource might help them to understand, or provide you with the narrative to best explain things to them.
Simply click the image below for a child friendly fact sheet:
There's also a book that has been written by Elizabeth Jenner, Kate Wilson and Nia Roberts alongside consultant Professor Graham Medley (Professor of Infectious Disease Modelling at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine).
Click the book cover to the left for a downloadable version of it.