TISBURY SURGERY

 

As you may have read recently - the N.H.S. is “on its knees”.  ‘12,000 hospital doctors and 50,000 nurses short’ was the headline of a B.B.C. article last month – not to mention the failure of all governments since David Cameron to deliver the 5,000 then 10,000 and now 6,000 extra GPs.  In fact overall we are 2,000 GP’s fewer than when these pledges were made.   It took me 13 years to qualify as a G.P. - making home grown options more challenging.

Rather than focus on the negatives, we thought we could point out some of the ways in which you can help yourself, the N.H.S. and the surgery.  There are numerous services to which you can self refer to help you with self-management.  There are also some things, that you may not know about, that increase workflow in the surgery, in turn aiding our efficiency and capacity.

 

Mental Health

You can self-refer for psychology for low level mental health and wellbeing issues.  This is via something called I.A.P.T. (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies):

01380 731335          https://iapt.awp.nhs.uk/wiltshire-iapt

You can self-refer to children’s mental health services and we actually strongly encourage you to do so, as the young person or their family will know their difficulties well and in more details than can be explained to a G.P. in a 10 minute appointment

https://secureforms.oxfordhealth.nhs.uk/camhs/Wiltshire.aspx

 

Any joint and muscle problems

You can access our first contact physiotherapist who is at Tisbury Surgery on a Monday by calling our reception.  He is still available for our patients but based at other surgeries on Wednesday and Friday in the local area.  Simon (Hawkins) has done additional training and sees people directly for any problem with the musculoskeletal system - even when they have not consulted any healthcare professional before.  We would strongly suggest patients see Simon first before seeing a G.P. for such issues - he will always let us know if he believes it is an issue requiring G.P. input.  Like a G.P., he can arrange x-rays and advise on prescriptions and make referrals onwards to various teams.

If you would like some physiotherapy for an injury/pain or problem you can self-refer to them too:

https://wiltshirehealthandcare.nhs.uk/services/physiotherapy/physiotherapy-overview/

If you cannot access the internet a printed version of their form can be obtained from reception and returned for us to send off for you.

 

Adult Social Care

If you need new equipment for mobility or an aid for home for a longstanding or ongoing problem you need to request this yourself via the council:

0300 456 0111         https://adultslas.wiltshire.gov.uk/web/portal/pages/referrals/acreferral

These details also allow you to make a referral about someone you are worried about – perhaps a friend/neighbour/family member who might need more social support such as carers or better locks for the doors etc.

 

Health Screening Services

If you have missed breast, bowel or any other form of health screening you need to access these yourself directly and do not need a referral from the surgery.  The following website has all the details for all forms of screening - and I have listed a few below.

https://www.wiltshire.gov.uk/public-health-screening

Abdominal aortic aneurysm (men only, one off screen at 65 years old).  For those living in Wiltshire the number is 01722 336262 ext. 2640 or 2539, or email salisbury.aaa@nhs.net.

Breast screening – mammograms are offered every 3 years.  For women living in Salisbury and the surrounding villages call 023 81204959 or email bsuappts@uhs.nhs.uk.

You may well already have received an invitation from University Hospital Southampton to attend The Breast Screening Unit in September/October 2022 at the Nadder Centre in Tisbury.

Bowel screening - Men and women aged between 60 and 69 are automatically sent a bowel cancer screening kit through the post every 2 years.  For queries related to bowel cancer screening  telephone the National Screening Programme's Freephone helpline number - 0800 707 6060.

Cervical smear screening can only be undertaken if you have received an invitation letter.  Please contact us if you are unsure.

 

Eye problems

NHS England has commissioned opticians to see patients with any eye problem in the first instance.  This can be access via the primary eye cares service:

https://primaryeyecare.co.uk/

Whilst there are others, our nearest optician offering this service is:

Silverthornes Opticians, 50 Catherine Street, Salisbury, SP1 2DD

01722 322880

In general, if you do not have pain or vision loss or redness an optician is a sensible first step before seeing a G.P.  An exception would be if anything very suddenly changed then urgent care here or via A+E should be accessed. From the surgery’s point of view it would be such a tremendous help if people could:

 

From the surgery’s point of view it would be such a tremendous help if people could:

  1. Use online services – doing as much as possible via SystmOnline really reduces our phone waiting times which means we can help the most people we can.  You can view results, letters and order medication.  Booking appointments this way is also really effective.  We have the vast majority of our appointments online, the only exceptions are a few appointments to provide emergency capacity and for appointments that require specific instructions for example breathing tests.
  2. If you require an appointment urgently (within 48 hours) please call the surgery and do not send emails.  You often can book appointments online as well.
  3. Calling the surgery – if you could call the surgery after 11:30am for all non urgent matters that would be appreciated as we often get people calling with prescription issues or to book routine blood tests at 0800.   This means patients with pressing medical problems have to wait a long time in the queue.
  4. Online prescription requests - When requesting prescriptions online please do so in one order as each separate order requires an extra task and an extra entry into the same notes. Whilst your messages are always lovely (like “thank you”) these too put your prescription in a slower queue, therefore if it is not needed please do not write any messages.
  5. The surgery is using text or SMS sent booking links more and more.  This improves patient access, choice and frees our admin time to sort other issues for you.   PLEASE let us have your mobile phone number and email address.

 

Finally an advertisement for staff for a pharmacy team seems to have started a rumour that the surgery is taking over Boots in the village.   I am the pharmacy lead G.P. for our local group of surgeries called Sarum West Primary Care Network (PCN).   I have been recruiting staff to work across all these sites to improve the handling and safety of medications.  I think that is where the confusion has arisen.   There are strict rules around supplying medications and due to our close proximity to Boots we cannot dispense medication.  I do hope that clears it up.

Dr. Adam Smith

 

Published: Sep 30, 2022