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Latest GP data shows increase in appointments

Thousands more GP appointments are available in the Black Country and West Birmingham today than before the pandemic, new data has revealed.

 The latest figures for GP access show that 570,191 appointments were booked during August 2021, up from 547,384 in August 2019. Of these, 57% were carried out face-to-face and 49% took place on the same day they were requested (up from 41% in 2019).

 The additional appointments are the result of an increase in digital consultations, which is part of the NHS’s long-term strategy for primary care but was accelerated during the pandemic so GPs and their clinical teams could continue to see patients safely.

 The new statistics have also revealed that DNAs – where a patient fails to attend an appointment but does not cancel so it can be rebooked by the practice – are down, from 7% of all appointments in 2019 to 5% today.

However, this means there are still more than 25,000 GP appointments being missed in the Black Country and West Birmingham each month, so people are being urged to contact their practice if they cannot attend, and the slot can then be offered to someone else who needs it.

 While digital and telephone consultations now make up more than 40% of patient contacts, GPs will always examine a patient in person if medically necessary, while face-to-face appointments are still available for anyone unable to use technology. All patients have the right to request a face-toface appointment, although this may not be the fastest way to be seen as priority must be given to the most vulnerable.

Changes from Monday 4th October 2021

From Monday 4th October the patient waiting area will be open for patients who have booked appointments for face to face consultations.  You will be asked to take your temperature and sanitise your hands on arrival.  Please wear a face covering.

What to do when we are closed

IF YOU ARE A REGISTERED PATIENT AND REQUIRE URGENT MEDICAL ASSISTANCE WHICH CANNOT WAIT UNTIL THE SURGERY RE-OPENS, PLEASE TELEPHONE 0121 203 9999 & CHOOSE OPTION 2 & YOU  WILL BE TRANSFERRED TO OUR OUT OF HOURS PROVIDER.

THE SURGERY REMAINS OPEN MONDAY - FRIDAY 08.00 - 18.30, FOR BOOKED TELEPHONE/VIDEO CONSULTATIONS/FACE-TO-FACE CONSULTATIONS. THERE ARE SOME LIMITED APPOINTMENTS (TELEPHONE/VIDEO CONSULTATIONS ) AVAILABLE BETWEEN 18.30 - 20.00 WHICH NEED TO BE BOOKED BY THE SURGERY.

Alternative services:

Improved Access Scheme Urban Health Primary Care Network is launching the IAS (Improved Access Scheme) to extend the hours available to patients to be seen by a GP for its member practices. As Halcyon Medical is a member of Urban Health, patients will be able to book to see a GP for the following extended hours: Monday to Friday: 18:30 – 20:00 (6:30pm till 8pm) Saturday: 09:00 – 13:00 (9am till 1pm) Your local Hub is Broadway Health Centre Group Practice, Cope Street, Ladywood, Birmingham, B18 7BA.  To book please call the Surgery, Tel. No. 0121 203 9999.

NHS 111:  Call 111 for confidential healthcare advice 24 hours a day. 

Urgent Care Centre:  The nearest Urgent Care Centre is Summerfield Urgent Care Centre, 134 Heath Street, Winson Green, Birmingham, B18 7AL, tel. 0121 389 1100.

Accident & Emergency Departments:  HOSPITAL A&E DEPARTMENTS ARE FOR SERIOUS ACCIDENTS AND EMERGENCIES NOT MINOR INJURIES OR HEALTH PROBLEMS.  The nearest hospital is City Hospital, Dudley Road, Winson Green, Birmingham, B18 7QH, tel. 0121 554 3801. 

Cancelling your Appointment

If you are unable to attend an appointment with one of the doctors or nurses, please telephone or use the link at the bottom of this page to cancel your appointment.

By giving us as much notice as you can you are helping us to make sure that someone else is given your slot.

Where to go for other local services:

Birmingham NHS Walk-in Centre, lower ground floor, Boots the Chemist, 67-69 High Street, Birmingham, B4 7TA, tel. 0121 255 4500.

NHS 111:  Call 111 for confidential healthcare advice 24 hours a day. 

Urgent Care Centre:  The nearest Urgent Care Centre is Summerfield Urgent Care Centre, 134 Heath Street, Winson Green, Birmingham, B18 7AL, tel. 0345 245 0769.

Accident & Emergency Departments:  HOSPITAL A&E DEPARTMENTS ARE FOR SERIOUS ACCIDENTS AND EMERGENCIES NOT MINOR INJURIES OR HEALTH PROBLEMS.  The nearest hospital is City Hospital, Dudley Road, Winson Green, Birmingham, B18 7QH, tel. 0121 554 3801.

COVID 19

For Current Covid information from NHS UK please visit https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

Information Regarding Your Covid Recovery and Long Covid

COVID-19 continues to pose a serious risk to public health. There is a lot of misinformation that undermines our collective fight against the virus, so it is important you get the facts from a trusted source to keep yourselves safe, protect the NHS and ultimately, save lives.

If you are concerned about your recovery please use the resources below or visit Your COVID Recovery | Supporting your recovery after COVID-19 if you are still concerned then contact your GP for advice.

Long Covid General Resources

While coronavirus symptoms tend to pass quickly for most, there are some who continue to experience long term effects for additional weeks or months beyond the initial illness – this is known as long Covid. Please know that you are not alone, according to Office for National Statistics estimates, 1.1 million people in the UK were reporting long Covid symptoms in the four weeks to 6 March 2021. Long Covid can happen to anyone who has had COVID-19, even if the illness was mild, or they had no symptoms. ‘Long Covid Support’ has compiled a useful guide on the help and support available for those suffering with long Covid. Click here to view.

Other useful links:

https://patient.info/news-and-features/long-covid-what-support-is-available

https://www.blf.org.uk/support-for-you/long-covid/what-is-long-covid

 

Breathlessness Management

Respitatory illnesses, such as COVID-19, can cause breathlessness both during and whilst recovering. How you think and feel about breathing is important, it can affect our daily activities as well as our health and wellbeing. There are multiple approaches that can be used to tackle breathlessness, the main one being breathing techiques. This leaflet offers five different exercises used to control and settle your breathing, please see here. Alternatively, please click here for an insightful video on respiratory care that includes a walkthrough on positional advice.

Other useful links: 

Your Covid Recovery

How to cope with being short of breath (positional advice)

Respiratory Care Energy conservation

Respiratory Care Active cycle of breathing techniques

Respiratory Care How to cope with being SOB – breathing exercises

What can I do to manage my breathlessness?

Asthma UK - If you get COVID-19 and have asthma

Helplines:

Asthma expert nurse helpline - 0300 222 5800

 

Voice and Swallowing

In in order to stop any food or fluid entering the lungs, our natural instinct is to hold our breath, however, Covid can make this difficult. If you find that COVID has affected your breathing, you may need to take action to help manage your coordination of breathing and swallowing. ‘Your Covid Recovery’ offers useful advice to ensure your breathlessness does not affect your eating or drinking whilst you are unwell. Please click here to view.

 

Cough Management

Whilst recovering from Covid you may still experience a dry cough for some time which, if left unmanaged, can cause irritation and inflammation. It can be very difficult to control your cough, but for your airways to stay clear it is important that you keep practising. Please see here for a helpful guide on breathing exercises.

Appetite, taste, and smell

If you are struggling to eat enough, or if you are losing weight or strength in your muscles, you may need to think differently about the foods you are eating. This leaflet provides important tips to help you get the most out of the foods you eat while you are unwell and may help you to regain some of the weight or strength you have lost. The malnutrition pathway website has produced a useful guide to follow. Click here to view.

Other useful links:

Eating Well

Nutrition Support

Your Covid recovery – taste and smell

Your Covid Recovery – eating well

 

Fatigue and Pacing 

Have you been feeling tired and exhausted despite getting plenty of sleep and rest? It is normal to feel tired from time to time but if this has been happening for an extended period, it is more than likely that you are suffering from post-viral fatigue. The Royal College of Occupational Therapists offer useful advice and activities on how to increase energy levels and gradually stabilise your body. Please see link here on how to manage post-viral fatigue after Covid-19.

Other useful links:

College of Occupational Therapy – How to conserve your energy

Your Covid Recovery – fatigue

Your Covid Recovery – sleeping well

 

Mobility and Function

It is common to experience physical problems whilst recovering from Covid-19, this could include muscle weakness and joint stiffness, fatigue, as well as reduced mobility. If you feel that you are struggling to remain as active as you once were, please see CPS’ leaflet that provides six easy to follow exercises to help rebuild your muscle strength. Please click here to view.

Other useful links:

Your Covid recovery – returning to work

 

Cognition

Many people who have recovered from COVID-19 have reported feeling not like themselves: experiencing short-term memory loss, confusion, or an inability to concentrate. Problems with attention and concentration can make it hard to focus and ignore distractions day-today, therefore it is important that we manage these difficulties. Please see useful advice here on Pacing, Planning and Prioritising your daily activities.

 

Psychology and Mental Health

Fear, worry, and stress are natural reactions to potential or actual threats especially during times when we are faced with uncertainty and the unknown. As a result, people's anxiety in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic is normal and understandable. Many of us are struggling with how the virus is affecting ourselves and our loved ones, but please remember that you are not alone. The Mental Health Foundation website offers multiple resources to help us stay informed on what we can do to support and manage our wellbeing during such difficult times. For more information, please click here.

Other useful links:

Your Covid recovery – managing fear and anxiety

MIND

British Lung Foundation – How can I manage my anxiety?

Change, Loss ad Bereavement

Helplines:

Mind - 0300 123 3393

The Samaritans - 116 123 (free) or email jo@samaritans.org.uk 24 hours

Shout Crisis Text Line - text ‘Shout’ to 85258

Re-think Mental Illness - Mon-Fri 10am – 2pm, 0300 5000 927

 

Continence

Urinary incontinence is a common problem affecting around 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men, therefore it is not something that anyone should ‘just live with’. Continence is a sensitive subject that can make people feel embarrassed, but it is a treatable medical condition and there is always help available. BCHC provide a service delivered by specialist continence nurses, who deliver bladder and bowel clinics in community settings. Do not suffer in silence, for more information please click here, or alternatively please email bchnt.continencereferrals@nhs.net.

Other useful links:

National Association for Continence - resources

Council Information

Please see links below for further advice and information from your local council and their key partners, as well as the latest official Government information relevant to local government.

Birmingham Council

Dudley Council

Sandwell Council

Walsall Council

Wolverhampton Council

 

 



 
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