A big thank you to the admin staff, clinical staff and volunteers who made the Flu Clinics held on Saturdays in October a resounding success with those patients who attended. A staggering 93% of over 65s in our population received the vaccine (typically 65% in the past). A further 56% of eligible under 65s with a pre-existing medical condition were also vaccinated. Those patients who fall into the above categories who were unable to attend a clinic, will be invited for an appointment shortly. Stocks of vaccine are available. You can check your eligibility through this website https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/flu/
If you are aged 50-64 and are not in a risk group you will be contacted later in November regarding vaccination. These clinics are not likely to be until early December when the Department of Health stock of vaccine has been released.
This model has been a valuable exercise in the organisation of mass vaccination which will hopefully be useful in the not too distant future.
Networking for Enhanced Services
A recent development for the NHS is the formation of Primary Care Networks (PCN); these are groups of general practices working together with other local providers to offer more personalised, coordinated health and social care to their local populations. They are designed to be small enough to maintain the traditional strengths of general practice but at the same time large enough to provide resilience and support the development of integrated teams. Lambourn is now a member of the West Berkshire Rural PCN together with Hungerford, Kintbury and Wooton Hill Surgeries. Although it is early days, we are now beginning to see the benefits of sharing resources. Last month we highlighted the reintroduction of extended appointment hours together with our PCN partners and we can now announce the appointment of Becky Neeves as a Social Prescriber working across our partner network.
What is Social Prescribing?
Social Prescribing is a way of working with people to address their non-medical needs and help them to take control of their health and well-being. It recognises that a wide range of non-medical issues can affect people’s health.
Would you like to?
- Improve your general health and wellbeing
- Reduce feelings of isolation
- Discover local self-help groups, clubs and befriending agencies
- Volunteer your own time and experiences, and get involved in your local community
- Explore support for housing, employment, benefits, debt & legal advice
During COVID, Becky has spent much of her time working with shielding patients making sure they had everything they needed and knew how to access all the available support. If you think that social prescribing may help you then talk to your GP or health professional and if appropriate they will put you in touch with Becky who is there to listen to you, and put you in touch with the people and activities that might help you feel better.
Still Open for Business
Just for reassurance, the surgery will be open as normal during “Lockdown 2”, albeit operating under the COVID restrictions, as has been the case since the first lockdown in March. Please do continue to request an appointment (via the website, or by telephone if you do not have internet access) if you have any concerns about your health. Your doctor will arrange the most appropriate appointment for you to address your concern. This could be by telephone, online, video consultation or face to face.
You can contact the PPG via email; email@example.com or in writing via the surgery office (Bockhampton Road, Lambourn, RG17 8PS) addressed to the Chair of the PPG.