Vitamin D supplements During the autumn and winter months everyone is advised to take a supplement of vitamin D every day to support general health and in particular for bone and muscle health. Many of us have been indoors more than usual this year and so might not have been making enough vitamin D from sunlight. You can find general advice on vitamin D here: www.nhs.uk/vitamin-d School Letters Please note that it is not a GPs responsibility to issue school letters of absence for your children. Government guidance is that school attendance is mandatory unless your child is self-isolating, has symptoms of COVID-19 or is close to someone who has COVID-19.’ This link contains the Governments press release on schools reopening https://www.gov.uk/government/news/schools-and-colleges-to-reopen-in-full-in-september Please note that parents should still make arrangements to contact their GP in the normal way if their child is ill. We are continuing to work hard to maintain a high quality standard of healthcare services for all our patients at this time of increased pressure and this remains our focus. We are discouraging and have dramatically reduced non-essential foot fall into the surgery. Only patients that have been booked into a face to face appointment by a Doctor or Nurse should attend the surgery. We are happy for you to contact us via telephone and encourage this firstly. Please avoid unnecessary visits to the surgery. It has certainly been a testing time for all due to the COVID- 19 outbreak but we would like to thank all our patients for their patience and cooperation for adhering with the ongoing changes to our guidelines. The safety of patients, clinicians and staff is of utmost importance to us at Ash Tree House. We are still here for you and we continue to ensure that people who need care or medical assistance receive it. Do not ignore other health issues or ongoing medical conditions during this time, should you need us please get in touch via telephone where one of our healthcare professionals can advise you further. Please be reassured our surgery has taken every step to be ‘Clean’ and ‘Safe’ should you be invited to come in via a booked appointment. We are following strict protocols to ensure the safety of all our patients, GP’s and Nurses. We have a strict cleaning and sanitising routine, all staff are wearing PPE “personal protective equipment” and we are adopting the 2 metre recommended guideline. All our staff on entering and moving around the building are wearing surgical masks. Reducing foot fall, we have been discouraging unnecessary visits into the practice. Patients wishing to register as a New patient who are living within our catchment area on a permanent basis or Temporary patient registrations can be registered if required and necessary. We WILL NOT compromise any urgent care you may require. All documents can be found online on our website https://www.ashtreehousesurgery.nhs.uk/ Digital / Virtual appointments– For your protection the practice has moved to a telephone triage system. Please call us as normal then an appropriate clinician will call you back. If you aren’t required to attend the surgery this will be a virtual appointment. If it is clinically deemed safe and necessary you will be invited in for a face to face consultation should that be the clinical decision. If we have booked you an appointment to come into the surgery please do not arrive early, we are not encouraging patients to wait around in the waiting areas and have reduced capacity so this doesn’t happen. Please wait in your car or outside the building until the appointment time. Digital Access – Our GPs and clinicians have increased the use of video consultations with patients and may ask patients to send in digital photographs if appropriate that will help us to assess the patient. We also can communicate with you via a secure text message system with instructions of how to send imagery to us. By sending the imagery you are consenting to the image being saved on to your medical record. This has proven very useful for our clinicians to make an assessment virtually. Repeat medication- The dedicated script line is open from 10- 2 pm for ordering your repeat medication. We encourage patients where possible to register for patient access online patient-access-registration-form 2020. This enables you to order at your own leisure ensuring that patients still have ready access to their medicines. We may have in some cases set up your repeat prescriptions to be Electronic “Repeat Dispensed” ERD you would have be contacted regarding this prior to this 6ehappening. This means that you DO NOT need to place an order with the surgery. We send more issues of your prescription up front that can be called upon when they are needed by the pharmacy. Shielding Information explained The NHS wrote to those people considered to be at highest clinical risk from coronavirus (COVID-19) to inform them that they should stay at home at all times and avoid all face-to-face contact for a period of at least 12 weeks in March 2020. There are around 2.2 million people in England with underlying severe health conditions who had been advised to stay at home and avoid non-essential face-to-face contact. These are people of all ages – with specific medical conditions identified by senior UK clinicians – who are at greater risk of severe illness from coronavirus. For further information on shielding please go to the gov.uk website https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus Medical Pathway If you feel you have coronavirus related symptoms of a high temperature or a new, continuous cough. Please stay at home and self-isolate please do not come into the practice. You do not need to contact 111 to tell them you’re staying at home and isolating. If you require further advice please access the 111 online website https://111.nhs.uk/ if you are displaying symptoms of Covid-19 and are extremely unwell and have other concerns, please visit https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19/. Further information can be found on the NHS website click below https://www.nhs.uk/ Link to NHS website Ash Tree House thanks you for your continued patience and support during this time.