Covid Vaccination Programme
14th January 2021
We are currently working hard to deliver the COVID-19 vaccine to eligible patients in the priority groups, at the same time as providing care to all those who need it.
The public have an important part to play to help us do this:
- please don’t contact the surgery to seek a vaccine, we will contact you
- when we do contact you, please attend your booked appointments
- and please continue to follow all the guidance to control the virus and save lives.
There are also a number of national vaccination sites that are opening and patients may receive a letter from the national NHS Covid-19 Vaccination Booking Service inviting you to book an appointment at one of these vaccination centres. If you receive a letter and are able to travel to the vaccination centre safely, we recommend that you book using the details the letter provides.
Please be aware that while we deliver Covid-19 vaccinations some of our routine clinics and appointments may need to be postponed or rearranged. We will contact you directly if this impacts you – please do not contact the surgery. If you do not hear from us, please attend your booked appointment.
Our practice remains open and you can still contact the surgery for any medical concerns you may have.
For medical advice outside of surgery hours, please contact NHS 111 on the telephone or online via 111.nhs.uk.
You can find out more about the COVID-19 vaccination programme, including frequently asked questions and patient information leaflets here https://www.cambridgeshireandpeterboroughccg.nhs.uk/news-and-events/latest-news/covid-19-national-vaccination-programme/.
Prescription Requests - Update 19/10/2020
The Partners and management at Firs House are constantly reviewing surgery processes to ensure our patients are offered a safe and accessible service. Following lockdown in March 2020 Firs House introduced the option of calling the surgery to request prescriptions to support those who were shielded and could not travel to the surgery to post their requests.
More recently we have become aware that this service is now being used by a large portion of our patient population, which increases demand on our reception staff. Following the lifting of lockdown in August 2020, and in response to feedback from patients about queue times when calling the surgery, we have taken the decision to stop the option of calling the surgery for prescriptions to allow us to review demand and impact on our call times.
Firs House will re-introduce our previous system where patients have to put their prescription requests in writing, or request prescriptions using Patient Online Access. We will continue to review this process and ensure that it is reflective of local needs and in line with national guidance.
PRESS RELEASE 14/09/20 09:00hs Press Release
Responding to a letter from NHS England to GP practices which instructs them that they must offer face-to-face appointments to patients, Dr Katie Bramall-Stainer, Chief Executive of Cambs LMC said,
“Cambridgeshire and Peterborough GPs and practice teams have been working incredibly hard to keep their services as accessible as possible during the Covid-19 pandemic. NHS England encourages all surgeries to undertake virtual triage of patients as their first point of contact, to minimise the numbers of patients having to be physically brought into surgeries to be examined, lest it put them at risk. Practices are not closed – according to NHS Digital in July 2020, Cambs GPs offered 398,206 appointments across our 86 practices – and NHS Digital believes this represents an under-estimate. Where face to face appointments are offered, they need to be both necessary and safe.
“Cambs LMC strongly protests against NHS England using a letter to paint an utterly false impression of the vast majority of GPs who have taken their professional responsibilities to their patients extremely seriously, at some considerable personal cost and risk to the GPs themselves.
“Surgeries across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough should be commended for adapting so quickly and seamlessly to what was – and remains - a massive shift in their usual working pattern. Government needs to do much more to recognise and support practices in doing this, especially since local hospitals have advised they are not presently able to operate at their usual capacity.
“There will always be a need for some patients to see their GP or another clinician in person. Where it is both safe to do so and clinically appropriate, practices will always ensure this is facilitated. Practices across Cambs remain committed to making sure their services are accessible to those without access to digital consultations, or who struggle to use technology.
“Cambs practices are seeing in excess of 10,000 patients every single day – their workload has significantly increased as a result of the ongoing impact of the pandemic on other NHS services and the unprecedented number of people waiting for postponed procedures. NHS England and Government have so far failed to recognise the significant impact this is having on general practice and should be tackling this as a priority for our patients.
“Technology can support GPs and their teams deliver good quality care to their patients, and improve access at the same time but it is clearly not a complete solution – as we have always maintained. This winter we will need to vaccinate an extra 110,000 Cambs residents. Whilst we remain under enormous pressure, and without additional resource from government, Cambridgeshire general practice remains open and GPs continue to give communities the care they need.”
Soup & Shake Diet
Despite media reports or a national offer, Cambridgeshire is not currently taking part in the pilot for the new NHS Soup and Shake diet for Diabetes Type 2 and weight loss patients. Please keep checking the link below for updates.
Please don’t be a DNA! Missed Appointments are causing the NHS Millions each year. If you cannot make your appointment or no longer need it, PLEASE CANCEL IT!
At Firs House and Telegraph Street surgeries, a total 330 appointments were lost to patients who did not cancel nor attend their appointments in November and December 2019.
The total number of Doctor appointments lost to patients who ‘did not attend’ during these months was sadly 107. This is the equivalent of 3 and a half days of a Doctors time lost, or closing the surgery for a whole day, and £2000 worth of wasted NHS funding.
You are able to cancel your appointment online through patient access regardless of how you booked it, or by emailing email@example.com.