GP Practices have had to make significant changes to the way that they deliver care to their patients. In line with government guidelines we have adapted our working practices to ensure the safety of our patients and our staff whilst working through the pandemic.
As we ease out of this, the third lockdown via the government roadmap we felt it appropriate to update you with regard to our accessing our services and what is the new normal.
Lion Health is open and continues to provide services as it has done throughout the pandemic and as other businesses and services re-open their doors to the public we respectfully remind you that the threat of Covid 19 still exists within our community, and we ask our patients to move forward with attention to revised guidance and continue to adapt the necessary precautions such as wearing face coverings, practice good hygiene and maintaining social space wherever is possible.
GP Practices must continue to be Covid secure. Those that have attended surgery during the past year will be aware that we have a process in place for managing entry into the building to help minimise the risks.
New ways of working have been introduced in order to maintain access to our primary health care team whilst protecting you and our staff. Telephone first for example has provided an efficient and effective alternative to face to face appointments for many patients, enabling access at a convenient time for the clinician and the patient, via telephone or video call. Lots of common conditions can be diagnosed through this route thanks to the experience of our team of Doctors and Nurse Practitioners and their ability to recognise the signs and symptoms of conditions from the information that you provide. The discussion with your GP and the information you provide will determine whether or not he or she needs to see you. If so this will be arranged.
Telephone first has been a huge positive that has come out of the Covid pandemic. Patients have appreciated being able to make contact with their GP in a way that prioritises their safety. Easing out of lockdown will not change this approach and telephone first has and will continue to be an important part of how our practice works allowing us to offer an average of 2800 appointments per week with members of our team to include doctors, nurses, physiotherapists, pharmacists and other allied health care professionals. Our receptionists are trained to navigate patients to the person or team that can provide the most appropriate help for your condition.
We do however recognise that not every situation can be handled over the telephone and as such have overhauled our practice website and patients are now able to utilise the site to raise non urgent queries, or provide feedback to our administrative staff. It’s early days but appears to be working well from both the practice and patients perspective as non-urgent queries can be raised and responded to at times that are convenient for both parties, thus easing congestion on the telephone lines leaving the lines free for more pressing queries. The site can be accessed via LionHealth.co.uk.
We will continue to ask patients to attend the practice for collection of correspondence or to drop off sharps boxes between 6 and 7pm and drop off samples prior to 4pm unless attending for a prearranged appointment. We ask patients to use the prescription drop off box at the side entrance gates to place their repeat prescription requests to avoid congestion around the entrance to the building. Additionally we respectfully remind patients who require information regarding hospital appointments and hospital results that they must contact the hospital directly, as they are best placed to deal with this. Our staff will not have this information to hand.
We continue to work hard to improve our telephone access and hope to be able to open up some on line booking in the near future.
On behalf of all at Lion Health, may I take this opportunity to thank you for your support in adapting to the changes as we move forward out of lockdown and the potential challenges that that will bring.
Lion Health Partners and Management Team