From Monday 20 August it will be even easier for people to make an appointment with a GP
From Monday 20 August it will be even easier for people to make an appointment with a GP, thanks to a new national ‘extended access’ initiative, which will improve access to primary care services in North West Surrey.
This means, in addition to being able to book GP appointments at your local practice, you will also have access to additional appointments during the evenings and at weekends at four locations across the local area.
The extra appointments are being provided by the GP federation that brings together all 40 GP practices in the local area and is known as North West Surrey Integrated Care Services.
By working together in a new and different way local GP practices will be improving access to primary care appointments, making it even easier for local people to get the care and advice they need, at a time that’s convenient to them.
These additional appointments will be available from 6-9pm on weekday evenings (including bank holidays but not in August) and from 9am to midday at weekends. Patients can book these appointments through their local GP practice.
As these extra appointments are provided from four GP surgeries in the area, the GP or clinician will have access to your medical record, with your consent, giving them access to all the information they would need to provide the best possible care.
The additional appointments will be provided at the following locations – and patients in North West Surrey can book appointments at any of these sites:
The Red Practice – Walton Health Centre (Rodney Road, Walton-on-Thames, KT12 3LB)
Studholme Medical Centre (50 Church Road, Ashford, TW15 2TU)
Sunbury Health Centre (Green Street, Sunbury-on-Thames, TW16 6RH)
Woking Community Hospital (Heathside Road, Woking, GU22 7HS)
Initially, these extra appointments will be provided by local GPs but from October there are plans to extend this service to also include nurse-led clinics, blood tests, physiotherapy assessments and digital consultations (which includes online face to face consultations via a patient smartphone).
For more information about this new service and the North West Surrey Integrated Care Services federation see https://www.nicsfed.co.uk/
GP Extended Access Clinics
In North West Surrey there will be two GP Extended Access Clinics available in each of our three localities. These GP Extended Access Clinics will allow patients to access prebooked GP appointments at a local practice. These appointments are available to book via your normal GP practice.
Patients unable to book an appointment at their normal GP practice will be offered appointments at either Knowle Green Medical Staines Health Centre, Knowle Green, TW18 1XD or Sunbury Health Centre, Green Street, Sunbury on Thames, TW16 6RH where GP Extended Access Clinics will be held. Please note these GP Extended Access Clinic appointments cannot be booked online via Patient Access.
The GP Extended Access Clinics will be available from 27 January to 31 March 2018, providing extra GP appointments Monday to Friday, 5pm to 8pm and Saturdays 8.30am to 11.30am.
These GP Extended Access Clinics are within local GP practices and the clinician who sees you will have access to your GP records making the appointment just like visiting your own GP practice.
You can also access medical advice by calling NHS111, visiting your local pharmacy, visiting one of our Walk-in-Centres at Ashford Health Centre, London Road, Ashford, TW15 3FE or Woking Community Hospital, Heathside Road Woking, GU22 7HS.
Parents with young children can also download the HANDi App (from Google Play or Appstore), which was developed to provide advice and support to if their children have symptoms of common childhood illnesses and give parents confidence in dealing with minor conditions themselves at home or the most appropriate place to seek support.
Dr Kaur Leaving
After five years of hard work at The Orchard Surgery, Dr Kaur is leaving for pastures new. She will be sorely missed by many patients, as she is known not only for her great clinical skills, but also for going the extra mile when a patient needs her help. An inspirational colleague, doctor and friend, we wish her all the very best for her future endeavours.
If you’d like to leave a card or gift for her at reception, please do so.
Although not officially leaving until mid-January 2018, her last day will be 21st December 2017.
World Mental Health Day
The Orchard Surgery is supporting World Mental Health Day 10th October and the NHS #IAMWHOLE campaign to help fight stigma around mental health. Post your picture on Facebook and Twitter if you are so inclined, and join our 'circle' #WMHD16 There is also a bespoke website for the campaign by young people for young people which is an online directory of mental health services and provisions - its called www.findgetgive.com.
Here is a link to a video explaining what it's all about featuring Jordan Stephens of hip hop duo 'Rizzle Kicks' as well as young people who have had mental health problems:
'Great News! According to the GP Survey results from July 2016, we are the seventh best Doctor's Surgery in Surrey, and in the top 5% of all GP surgeries nationally. We want to thank our wonderful patients for all their support, and we are humbled to have been voted so highly by the people who count on us for their care.'
Important information re. Housing Letters
Recently we seem to be receiving a growing number of requests from patients for letters to the Housing Department for re-housing on medical grounds. We wrote to the council asking them to clarify for us their policy on this. The following is the reply we received:
"I am pleased to note that you acknowledge in some instances clients ask for letters without even making initial contact with the Council. Similarly I am sure that in some cases our staff may be "at fault".
It is rare that we actually ask clients to obtain letters from their GPs. In many cases full details they provide themselves e.g. proof of any prescription drugs, referral letters to consultants may be sufficient. With the greatest respect to the profession generally, in some cases the GP letters we receive are so brief in detail as to be of very little value. Part of the problem is that some Housing register clients think they can increase the "points" they have and therefore their chances of being rehoused if they have medical details, without fully appreciating the type of medical information that may be of relevance. For information, within the next year or so it is anticipated that Spelthorne will be moving to a "Choice Based Lettings" scheme to nominate housing, where clients bid for particular properties rather than being nominated when they reach the top of the list. It is likely that this will have a significant impact overall and should reduce the emphasis on medical issues that some currently place.
I note your point that in future if we require medical reports, we should write to you specifying the type of information etc. I also respect the comment that you will charge a full fee for this. I will notify Housing Needs staff accordingly."
As a result of this we will NO LONGER be providing letters directly to patients for re-housing on health grounds.