Welcome to Meadowbridge Surgery Website

In an Emergency for collapse, Chest pain or Severe Breathlessness call 999 for an ambulance.   If you need medical advice Out of Hours, please call 028 25663 500.

27 OCTOBER 2020

The Treatment Room will be running on reduced appointments in the next weeks due to general staff shortages in the East Antrim area.  We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause. 

PATIENT REMINDER:  Patients cannot  attend appointments in the clinic if they have covid symptoms, are awaiting a test result, or if anyone in their household is currently awaiting a covid test result or has had a recent positive test where house contacts should be isolating for the required time. 

Clinically Urgent Symptoms  Advice for patients on what the Doctors consider to be clinically urgent symptoms in relation to the Telephone Triage.

How to book your flu vaccine appointment on-line   Click link for easy to follow instructions on booking an appointment on-line and for information on 'at risk groups'.  If you need to register for patient services to use this service contact reception.

Letter from Chief Medical Officer to schools, parents and carers and a Leaflet to parents/ carers from the Department of Education to provide you with some advice if a child or young person in your care develops symptoms

 Face Mask Exemption Cards- Use this link to print cards:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/face-coverings-when-to-wear-one-and-how-to-make-your-own

Area Hospital COVID Assessment POD (it is signposted on the Antrim Area Hospital site). If referred on to Antrim from a Covid Centre appointment, the patients must not enter the Emergency Department!  On arrival outside the COVID Assessment POD, ring from a mobile phone to 02894481717 and the POD staff will give instructions on where and when to come in. Remain in vehicle meanwhile.

Public Notice.  New ways of working but GP practices still open, protecting and caring.   GP practices are still open to treat patients, provide advice and issue prescriptions and GPs want anyone who has a health concern to feel reassured that they will be able to get an appointment and see a GP if necessary. 

DO NOT CONTACT MEADOWBRIDGE SURGERY IF YOU HAVE COVID19 SYMPTOMS.  If you have symptoms however mild, of coronavirus infection (Covid-19), you do not need to call Meadowbridge Surgery to go into self-isolation. If your symptoms worsen during home isolation or are no better after 10 days, contact NHS 111 online (external link opens in a new window / tab) or if you have no internet access, call NHS 111.

If you test negative for the Covid-19 infection you can come out of self-isolation. Otherwise you must stay at home for 10 days from when your symptoms started. This action will help protect others in your community while you are infectious.

If you live with others and you or one of them have symptoms of coronavirus, then all other household members must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the house became ill.

Covid-19 symptoms are:

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature), or;
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual), or;
  • anosmia - the loss or a change in your normal sense of smell (it can also affect your sense of taste)

Testing and tracing for COVID-19 Everyone in Northern Ireland with symptoms of coronavirus is now eligible for testing. Go to https://www.publichealth.hscni.net/covid-19-coronavirus/testing-and-tracing-covid-19   or ring 119 for more information.  If contacted regarding contact with a positive person you must self-isolate for 14 days even with a negative test result.

MESSAGE FROM THE GP Partners - The Meadowbridge Surgery team need to continue to protect the provision of necessary clinical services. To accomplish this doctors, nurses and admin staff now adhere to increased infection control measures which has resulted  in consultation capacity reducing by approximately 50%.  Covid Centres remain operational in supporting and protecting general practice during this pandemic situation.  Our GPs help cover the Covid weekday sessions along with GPs from other local practices which also decreases cover within our practice.

Of late worryingly, patient triage contacts have notably increased and this workload is felt to be unsustainable, especially in light of the rising numbers of Covid 19 infections and the impending flu season quickly approaching. To continue to ensure safe working practice, patients are asked to consider seriously what they can self-manage  at home in the first instance before contacting the practice if symptoms persist.  Self-care information and advice is also available on our website at meadowbridgesurgery.co.uk. 

Although our front doors remain closed with patients escorted to and from booked appointments, telephone consultations & all other workload including incoming bloods, prescriptions, paper-work and patient/hospital requests continue to be actioned.

Restrictions imposed over recent months have led to a new way of working to facilitate reduced capacity and this is going to continue into the foreseeable future but we need your help if we are to protect the provision of essential NHS services going forward.

 

If you are experiencing anxiety issues go to the Further Information/ Counselling and Support Services tab above for information and links to support services.

COVID-19 - GENERAL INFORMATION/GUIDANCE/LINKS

Any individual who develop symptoms of COVID-19 will be advised to self-isolate and book a test as soon as possible.

The expanded case definition for COVID-19 now includes: a new continuous cough OR fever OR a loss or changed sense of normal smell or taste (anosmia).

Everyone over five years of age in Northern Ireland with symptoms of COVID-19 is now eligible for testing. Testing is offered through the National Testing Programme and symptomatic members of the public can book their own test via this weblink:   www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test

Alternatively, symptomatic members of the public can book a test by calling the free phone number 119.

People booking a test can chose to be tested at one of four drive through test centres the nearest being in Belfast – these centres are operating as part of the National Testing Programme. Symptomatic members of the public can also book a test via the above weblink to order a postal self-test kit which will be dispatched to their home. The results of testing undertaken through the National Testing Programme are emailed or texted directly to the person who has been tested.

The NI Contact Tracing Service located in the Public Health Agency will be in touch with all cases of COVID-19. The symptomatic individual will need to share information about their recent interactions. This could include household members, people they have been in direct contact with, or within 2 metres for more than 15 minutes. People identified as close contacts will be informed that they have been in contact with a case and they will be advised of what actions they need to take.

All information discussed with the Contact Tracing Service will be handled with appropriate privacy and confidentiality safeguards.

The telephone number used by the service currently comes up as a ‘withheld number’ on receiving telephones but it is anticipated that there will be an update in due course advising that calls from this number will have an identifier.

We would once again like to thank you for your support in these unprecedented times, and to call on you to support the ‘Test, Trace and Protect’ Strategy which is of crucial importance as we move into the next phase of tackling COVID-19.

USEFUL LINKS

Public Health Agency(external link opens in a new window / tab)

www.publichealth.hscni.net/publications/take-5-steps-wellbeing-english-and-11-translations

www.nidirect.gov.uk/information-and-services/healthy-lives/mental-health

PATIENT TESTING  patients with Covid-19 symptoms are encouraged to get testedTests can be arranged via https://www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test or by phoning 119. There is more information on testing on the PHA website  Positive results are given directly to the patient through a phone call from the Public Health Agency and not the Practice.

Department of Health link provides information on Covid-19 activity in Northern Ireland & information on a new way of consulting within General Practice  http://www.hscboard.hscni.net/covid-19-drove-technology-transformation-gp-practices/

Infection Avoidance Steps   One of the ways you can stop the spread of a viral infection is by adhering to clean and healthy habits. The World Health Organisation’s recommendations are to:

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue when coughing or sneezing.
  • Throw away used tissues into a closed bin immediately.
  • Clean your hands using an alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
  • Avoid close contact with anyone who has a fever and cough.
  • Keep your hands away from your face to help avoid spread of infection.

Regular updates are also posted to local community facebook pages in: We love Whitehead / Ballycarry Community / Islandmagee Community / Positive Carrickfergus.

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GENERAL INFORMATION

Welcome along to our surgery website where we hope you will quickly benefit from a user friendly layout and a wealth of information about our healthcare services. Find out when we’re open and what to do when we’re not, all from the comfort of your own home.

Practice Statement: In his recent media coverage Dr Cupples has spoken as an individual Doctor, and has at no point claimed to represent the views of, or speak on behalf of Meadowbridge Surgery or any of its staff. The Partners wish it to be made clear that Meadowbridge Surgery continues to offer the full range of General Medical Services to all patients without discrimination. Within the practice there are a number of General Practitioners offering a broad range of expertise and services, and patients may continue to avail of advice and guidance in keeping with current Northern Ireland clinical recommendations and guidelines.  

 

NHS urges people who can not attend to cancel appointments. With each slot costing the NHS an average of £30, the cost of the missed GP appointments comes to about £216m a year.   NHS  said this could pay for either:

  • the annual salary of 2,325 full time GPs;
  • 224,640 cataract operations;
  • 58,320 hip replacement operations;
  • 216,000 drug treatment courses for Alzheimer’s; or
  • the annual salary of 8,424 full time community nurses.

Getting the Most from your Health Service - Patient Leaflet

CARER INFORMATION - see further information tab 

Pain Management tab  see Further Information tab above. 

Health and Happiness  Our team are dedicated to your continued good health and approach your care with professionalism, discretion and friendliness. You can count on a warm welcome from everyone involved here at the practice.

 

(Site updated 27/10/2020)
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