Pandemic Restrictions from Monday, 19 July - UPDATE
Throughout the pandemic we have strived to make the surgery as safe as possible for all our patients and staff. We will continue to do so going forward.
From the 19th July nothing will change at the surgery - patients will need to still wear a mask, socially distance and use hand sanitiser in the surgery and staff will continue to wear PPE. We do understand that it can be frustrating but we know that when people come to us they are sick and vulnerable (and some cannot receive the Covid vaccinations due to medical reasons) so we feel it would be wrong to not take these small precautions that can protect people.
In terms of opening up, as many of you know, we have never been shut and in fact have consulted with much higher numbers of patients than we did pre-Covid (face to face, by phone and by video), not counting the vaccinating Programme in the last 6 months.
We have increased our workforce to manage the overwhelming calls coming into the practice. In May we processed 15,635 incoming calls over 20 working days and many requests were for assistance with the NHS App, Covid Passport and Covid Vaccination Bookings. These types of requests take time to resolve and therefore cause a backlog of patients waiting in a queue to speak to the reception team.
We are signposting these types of requests to our interactive website and hope to see improvements on waiting times of patients seeking medical help.
The Weybridge Community has come so far in trying to minimise the impact of Covid and we are sure you understand that we need to keep the surgery as safe for ALL patients as we can.
Rowan Practice has been advised by our LMC; not to return to our pre-COVID appointment system until we receive further guidance on infection control measures. COVID 19 has not gone away and we will do everything we can to keep you, other patients and our staff safe. Variant COVID 19 maybe in our area or close by and we do not want to aid the spread. MASKS or face coverings must be worn inside our building. We would like you to continue to speak to reception (via the intercom) and wait outside or in your car if you are attending an appointment. We do have limited seating available in the waiting area if you cannot wait in your car or outside.
As a practice, we have remained seeing patients Face2Face on a medical needs basis throughout the whole pandemic. Yes – accessing the surgery has been in a different way but if our patients have needed to be seen, they have been. Any changes are in place to protect the staff and ensure we were able to continue to provide continuity of service. We are proud that we have been able to deliver a full service during these challenging times whilst protecting our patients and colleagues from becoming infected in our Surgery.
Our GPs, nurses, nurse practitioner, health care assistant and all the team have all seen people throughout the Pandemic and this is not going to change.
Our workload has increased hugely since this time last year, not taking into account that our staff have gone beyond their job, sometimes at a cost to themselves and their families. Alongside this, many of the practice team have been actively working at the local vaccination centres delivering the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme since January. We ask that you be kind to anyone you meet at the surgery whilst we endeavour to make sure every patient gets the medical treatment they need.
Demonstrating your COVID-19 vaccination status when travelling abroad
Following the announcement about the new traffic light system for international travel, find out more about how to you will be able to demonstrate your coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination status on the government website. Please do not contact the practice about this, as we cannot provide letters showing your COVID-19 vaccination status. Click here for the information from .gov.uk about demonstrating your vaccine status
Changes to our appointment booking system
Please be aware that we are experiencing very high volumes of calls. We had switched to a system of returning calls on the day to cope with the lockdown, but the volume of work has now become unmanageable. We are in the process of exploring the options that will work for you the patients and the practice, but it may take a little while to find the best solution. We appreciate your patience; please be assured our first priority is to provide a safe and responsive service for our patients
Important information for entering the surgery
On arrival at the building please use the intercom to speak to a receptionist. There is also a post box by the intercom for you to post repeat prescription requests or any correspondence.
If you are attending an appointment with a GP or Nurse you are required to wear a mask or face covering and sanitise your hands when entering the building.
Children under the age of 11, people with disabilities and those with breathing difficulties do not need to wear a mask to the surgery.
During the outbreak of COVID-19 to prevent the spread of infection, we have made changes to our appointment booking system. All appointments are via Duty Doctor Telephone Triage Service in the first instance. Following a telephone consultation with the GP you will be invited to the surgery if a face-to-face appointment is necessary.