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    How to access your GP during the pandemic


    GP practices are still open for business and are working hard to look after patients by providing non-urgent care despite the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic. All practices in Tameside and Glossop have been open throughout the pandemic.

    To protect patients by reducing the need to come into a practice and sitting in waiting rooms with potentially other infected patients, face-to-face appointments have been limited to those who require an examination in person. This helps to stop the spread of coronavirus but there are still others ways to access your GP easily. The clinical advice and support will not be affected by how you access your GP.

    The pandemic has meant a rapid expansion in the use of online consultations but these will never replace face-to-face appointments which remain available to all patients where clinically appropriate.
     
    In addition to face-to-face appointments, all GP practices in Tameside and Glossop are offering consultations online, video or over the phone.  This can be a convenient and flexible way to receive healthcare but if, you feel your needs requires to see healthcare professional in person, then this could be arranged for you.
     
    In the period April to July, a total of 305,513 appointments were delivered by Tameside and Glossop GP practices, this included 5,970 home visits and 1.8m medication items prescribed. 
     
    The ways to seek healthcare advice from a GP are:
     
    • Visit your GP surgery website to complete a confidential online consultation for non- urgent health needs to receive a response before the end of the next working day.  
    • Call your surgery to discuss a face-to-face or virtual (telephone or video) appointment.  
    • Call NHS 111 or go online to seek advice https://111.nhs.uk/ [search NHS 111 online] 
    If patients feel they would be best served to see a GP or healthcare professional in person, they should always ring their practice to discuss and make an appointment.
     
    Please do not go to your surgery unless you have an appointment.
     
    If you are waiting for a check-up, please be assured they will be in touch. 
     
    Appointments are being delivered face-to-face, online/video and over the telephone.
     
    If you are asked to go into your surgery for a face-to-face appointment, please remember to wear a face covering. GP practices have measures in place to keep you safe from infection during your visit.
     
    NHS Tameside and Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group CCG Co-Chair, Dr Ashwin Ramachandra said: “It is still easy to access your GP if you are feeling unwell or have any healthcare needs – we are just doing things differently to keep everyone safe. 

    “Please don’t leave symptoms untreated if you need health advice or care.  You can safely access services without letting symptoms worsen.

    “If your child is unwell or is due a vaccine, please be assured you can still safely access the same great care your child needs.

    “If you have symptoms that might be an early sign of something serious, like cancer your GP wants to hear from you.  So please don’t delay as waiting weeks can make a difference in how likely they are to be able to help you.

    “Finally, I want to thank GPs and practice staff for their continued hard work and commitment providing primary care health services for patients in Tameside and Glossop throughout these very difficult times.”