Local GP, Dr Anoop Dhesi, is urging the public to help the NHS help you by offering the following pieces of advice.
Patients in Norfolk and Waveney, like those across the country, will notice changes to the way in which they access GP services. Many GP practices are taking sensible precautions to ensure infections are not spread and that they can respond to patient enquiries. The NHS is preparing a number of practical solutions to effectively respond to this outbreak.
As part of these robust plans and as a precaution to protect patients, staff and the public, GP appointments booked online or those that have been pre-booked, may be followed up with a call by the surgery, to make sure they see the right person in the right place for their illness. Patients may also be encouraged to make use of more telephone and online appointments and many practices have moved to a triage first system.
This is not something that patients should be concerned about but is being done as a precaution to help protect patients, staff and the public from unnecessary exposure to the Coronavirus.
Local GP practices are working together so you may need to visit another practice to be seen but contact your usual practice in the normal way.
If your GP can safely provide your care remotely – over the phone, or online they will or for those self-isolating, GPs will advise how you can access appropriate clinical care.
Don’t call your GP practice for COPD or Asthma rescue pack
We are aware of some inaccurate information on social media about rescue packs for COPD and Asthmatic patients. Please do not contact your GP Surgery for a rescue pack.
If you have severe asthma or COPD you should continue to manage your condition in the usual way or if you feel you require assistance in managing symptoms of Coronavirus go to www.111.nhs.uk or call your GP surgery.
Please be patient and kind
Our staff are having to deal with a very busy workload whilst also having the same worries and concerns about their family as you. You may have to wait a little longer on the phone. Please treat them with kindness and respect as they are doing their best.
Order only what you need
Please order medications using the NHS app or online if you can. You should only order what you need when you have seven days of medicines left. There is sufficient supplies and GPs have been instructed to only prescribe your usual quantities and durations so please do not request more. Pain relief such as paracetamol is available at local supermarkets so please do not ask your GP to prescribe it.
Help us to help you
All the latest guidance surrounding travel advice and self-isolation periods and certification are online on the NHS and Gov.uk websites so please visit here and leave the phone lines free for those who need it.
For assistance in managing Coronavirus symptoms please visit www.111.nhs.uk
Continue to practice social distancing and ensure you are washing your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds.