COVID-19 Information

Oxford Astra Zeneca vaccine

We are aware that patients may have concerns about the safety of the Astra Zeneca vaccine following reports that some countries have suspended its use due to concerns about blood clotting.   

Question: Does the Oxford Astra Zeneca vaccine cause blood clots? 

Answer: Blood clots can occur naturally and are not uncommon. Reports of blood clots received so far are not greater than the number that we would normally expect to see amongst the groups of the population who have been vaccinated.  People should still go and get their COVID-19 vaccine when asked to do so. 

More than 11 million doses of the Astra Zeneca vaccine have now been administered across the UK.  Vaccine safety is of paramount importance and the regulatory agency, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) continually monitors the safety of vaccines in the UK.   

For more information and a statement from the MHRA, see this link (https://www.gov.uk/government/news/mhra-response-to-danish-authorities-action-to-temporarily-suspend-the-astrazeneca-covid-19-vaccine)

COVID Vaccination Update

We are delighted to have been able to deliver the first dose of the covid-19  vaccine to so many of our patients in recent weeks. The vaccination centre at Allum Hall has worked really well and we are continuing to bring patients in for their vaccine – particularly focussing on those who are clinically at risk, and also our unpaid carers. We have also started to invite our more elderly patients in for their second dose.

There are some weeks when we are not receiving as much supply of the vaccine as we would like, and we know this has led to some frustration and concern. We do liaise with our colleagues in the NHS locally to try to  get more vaccine stock into our centre, but the supplies are controlled nationally and this means we can’t always offer as many vaccine appointments as we want to.  If you or someone you care for is eligible for a vaccination and is very concerned about waiting to be vaccinated, you can alternatively try to book online at  https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus- vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/  or dial 119 to see if an alternative nearby vaccination centre has any appointments.

We are expecting the supply to increase considerably from the middle of March so we hope to be able to call in many more people after that – for their first and their second doses, and in line with national guidance about priority groups. Please be assured that nobody who is due a second dose will have to wait longer than 12 weeks for it.

For more information on the vaccine programme in this area, you can use this link https://www.healthierfuture.org.uk/covid

Thank you for your understanding.

Covid-19 Vaccine

If you are a Carer we will need documentation to show you are a registered Carer.
 
Please DO NOT   call the surgery- you will be contacted in priority order

Volunteers required at new Covid Vaccination Hubs

Volunteers are needed at the new Covid Hubs (vaccination centres), to help with the following.

We need Drivers with cars to help transport people to and from the Hubs.

We need Stewards to help direct people when they are in the Hubs.

And finally, we need people to do data entry, inputting patient details etc.

Please note that all Covid restrictions will be met.

If you are willing and able to volunteer, please email the surgery at: thegrove@nhs.net and mark the email for the attention of Gina Whiteman and your details will be passed to Herts Health, who will contact you to check what you can do to help.

DO NOT call the Surgery  please email your interest only.

Notice: Patient's MUST wear their own face covering/mask to enter the practice when attending for appointments. Patients with symptoms of COVID will not be allowed to enter the building.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update - Referrals

In view of the current Covid-19 crisis, there may be longer than usual delays with routine referrals and Hospitals will be screening all urgent referrals.

Our Practice and local hospital trusts are constantly reviewing and adapting protocols in line Government and NHS England advice and we hope to resume normal service as soon as possible. Thank you for your co-operation.

Coronavirus Notice

Patients could be referred to a specialist clinic in Borehamwood, if showing symptoms  of having COVID-19.  

This is a dedicated clinic that is expertly prepared to safely assess patients who may be suffering from Covid-19 infection. This clinic is carefully set up to reduce the risk of possible transmission between patients and staff. 
 
The clinic will call you within the next 1-2 hours and inform you of the next steps. Please do not turn up until you are given a dedicated time slot. 

Please note that the practice is experiencing an increased number of telephone calls, emails and prescription requests and it is taking us longer than usual to respond. Please bear with us during these demanding times.

We are trying to reduce the need for patients to attend our surgery so please download the NHS APP https://www.nhs.uk/using-the-nhs/nhs-services/the-nhs-app/ or use the prescription and sick note sections of our website for requests. 

Our processes and appointment system may change on a daily basis. At present we are offering triage appointments only and have stopped all advance bookings of appointments with GPs. Patients will need to call at 8am for a triage appointment. There will be a limited number of afternoon triage appointments released at 1.30pm for urgent problems.

The Practice staff will be meeting regularly to discuss further developments – The Practice will be closed between 1pm - 1.30pm on most days each week for these meetings. 

We thank you for your understanding and apologise for any inconvenience the changes may cause.

 

Advice for Parents

When your child is ill or injured it is very difficult to decide if/when to call your child’s GP, NHS 111 or go the Accident and Emergency Department (A&E). During the current situation and while the government is asking everyone to stay at home, it can be confusing to know what to do. The following attachment will provide you with some helpful guidance: Parent Guide COVID-19

While COVID-19 going on we will not be doing any child immunisation clinics. These will be offered by the school nurse who will contact parents. Any queries please call 01727 732062 but please only call if you have not had any contact by letter to make an appointment. Parents will only be contacted when vaccination is due.

Sick Notes

GPs are not issuing sick notes for self-isolation – Please do not call the Practice for self-isolation sick notes or request these via email or our website - Digital copies can be downloaded from NHS 111 online - https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19

Help in the community

Help in the community whilst the Covid-19 epidemic to help with dog walking, shopping help to urgent appointments see link below.

www.communities1storg.u./covid19support
Tel: 020 8207 5115
Email: lp@communities1st.org.uk

Domestic violence or abuse

Domestic violence or abuse can happen to anyone. Find out how to recognise the signs and where to get help.

If you're worried someone might see you have visited this page, the Women's Aid website tells you how to cover your tracks online.

Domestic violence, also called domestic abuse, includes physical, emotional and sexual abuse in couple relationships or between family members.

Domestic violence can happen against anyone, and anybody can be an abuser.

Getting help and support for domestic violence

You do not have to wait for an emergency situation to find help. If domestic abuse is happening to you, it's important to tell someone and remember you're not alone.

Extra support during coronavirus

Advice to self-isolate due to coronavirus does not apply if you need to escape from domestic abuse.

Many pharmacies have safe spaces where you can get information about support and make calls.

Find pharmacies offering safe spaces on the UK Says No More website

Other ways to get support:

You can also email for support. It is important that you specify when and if it is safe to respond and to which email address:

  • women can email helpline@womensaid.org.uk. Staff will respond to your email within 5 working days
  • men can email info@mensadviceline.org.uk
  • LGBT+ people can email help@galop.org.uk

The Survivor's Handbook from the charity Women's Aid is free and provides information for women on a wide range of issues, such as housing, money, helping your children, and your legal rights.

If you are worried that you are abusive, you can contact the free Respect helpline on 0808 802 4040.