Dear PPG member
Please excuse the long email, but we need your help!
Unfortunately, we are currently only able to offer appointments to patients who need to be spoken to or seen urgently. This is due to sickness and staff shortages in both the clinical and administrative teams. We are not offering the service we would like to, and all of our team are very aware of this. A few team members have left and we have recruited new staff who will be starting in the coming months. We also have sickness levels that you would expect currently, along with staff absent with long covid.
We absolutely understand that this is very frustrating for patients. It is also frustrating for our teams, and unfortunately we are now experiencing a high level of verbal abuse. In the simplest of terms we cannot offer what we do not have. All of our staff are working very hard in the face of adversity and it is very difficult for them to then receive a barrage of abuse when they turn up to work every day.
We will continue to try to provide the best possible service to our patients but we need everyone to bear with us as day-to-day operations are disrupted.
This is where you all come in. We would really like it if you could encourage anyone you know who is registered at Granta to be kind. We would like you to spread the word that we are trying our best – we are continually reviewing and revising processes on a daily basis to create as much capacity as possible.
We would also ask that you encourage patients to help themselves, and in turn help the NHS. Listed below are a number of services that patients could think about using before they contact their doctor:
SELF-CARE: You can treat many minor illnesses such as colds and coughs, sore throats and upset stomachs at home. Make sure you are stocked up with healthcare essentials such as pain relief (e.g. Paracetamol), cough and sore throat remedies, upset stomach treatment, rehydration treatment, heartburn / indigestion treatments and a first aid kit.
USE YOUR LOCAL PHARMACIST: They can offer you advice and guidance on your symptoms and on the best treatment for you – no appointment needed. Pharmacists are available on every high street and in supermarkets, with many being open in the evenings and at weekends.
COMMUNITY PHARMACIST CONSULTATION SERVICE (CPCS): This service enables patients to have a same day appointment with their community pharmacist for minor illness or an urgent supply of a regular medicine. Should you need to be escalated or referred to an alternative service, the pharmacist can arrange this. Please speak to our reception team to be referred into this service.
USE THE NHS UK SYMPTOM CHECKER www.nhs.uk: This helpful tool can guide you through your symptoms and direct you to the most appropriate health service for your needs.
RING NHS 111, OPTION 2: If you are experiencing a mental health crisis this First Response Service puts your mental health first. It provides 24-hour access, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, to mental health care, advice, support and treatment.
MEDICATION: If you need to order medication, please do this online via SystmOnline or the Airmid app. Details of how to do this can be found on our website www.grantamedicalpractices.co.uk If you do not have internet or mobile telephone access, you can send in your repeat medication slip or write in with your repeat request. Unfortunately, we cannot take prescription orders over the telephone.
Thank you for taking the time to read this, and if you would like to discuss anything further please do not hesitate to contact me direct on 01223 627743.
With best wishes
Head of Patient Services
Direct line: 01223 627743
Granta Medical Practices, London Road, Sawston, Cambridgeshire, CB22 3HU. Tel: 0300 234 5555
Working days: Monday, Tuesday & Thursday 07:30-17:00, Wednesday & Friday 07:30-12:30