COVID-19 (coronavirus) - temporary changes to our services
Updated 11th July 2020
Thank you to everyone in our community for working together and protecting each other through maintaining physical distancing, good hand hygiene and staying at home as much as possible. It has been hard but your commitment to this is appreciated. Through our collective efforts we have reduced but not eliminated the coronavirus. We need to continue to work together to stay safe in Frome as the lockdown is eased.
The government has updated it's advice about coronavirus, as follows:
There are three simple actions we must all do to keep on protecting each other:
- WASH HANDS – keep washing your hands regularly
- COVER FACE – wear a face covering in enclosed spaces
- MAKE SPACE – stay at least 2 metres apart, or 1 metre with a face covering or other precautions
If you have coronavirus symptoms get a test now and do not leave home for at least 10 days after your test. Symptoms are:
- a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
- a loss of, or change to, your sense of smell or taste - this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
If you have symptoms of coronavirus, stay at home. Do not visit a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.
Temporary changes to some services at Frome Medical Practice
As a result of the current situation relating to coronavirus (COVID-19) Frome Medical Practice is making a number of temporary changes to the way we deliver services, in order to protect patients and reduce the potential spread of infection.
Online appointment service
As a result of the coronavirus pandemic we temporarily suspended our online appointment service. We have now reinstated online bookings for some appointments, such as cervical smears, warfarin monitoring and some flu vaccinations. There will be a limited availability of GP triage calls available to book online too, but usually these will need to be booked before 8am. Many of our appointments will still need to be booked over the phone however. This is so we can speak to patients before appointments are made. We apologise for the inconvenience but this is a necessary measure at the current time.
To speak to a member of our team please call us on 01373 301301. Our care navigators will ask you a series of questions in order to be able to assess your need. We recognise that our telephone lines are extremely busy at the current time and ask for your patience and understanding whilst we work to speak with you as soon as we can.
If you have concerns or queries about coronavirus please do not call the practice, but visit the NHS coronavirus advice page. If you have symptoms of coronavirus do not visit the practice, a pharmacy or hospital. Instead, please use the NHS 111 coronavirus service.
From Friday 27th March we will be changing our opening hours to 8am - 6.30pm Monday to Friday.
Appointments it is important you still attend
If you have appointments for any of the following clinics / services it is important that you still attend them, unless you have symptoms of coronavirus or live with someone who has symptoms of coronavirus:
If you have been identified as being extremely vulnerable to coronavirus please contact us on 01373 301301 if you are due to attend an appointment at one of these clinics.
Advice on visiting the practice
Please avoid visiting the practice unless you have an appointment already booked. To talk to a care navigator about making an appointment please phone 01373 301301.
Please do not make an appointment if you have symptoms of coronavirus - see above for more information on this.
If we have spoken to you and made you an appointment at the practice, or if you have a cervical screening / childhood immunisation / mother and baby check up booked, please be assured that we are taking all appropriate precautions to protect both staff and patients from coronavirus.
We are asking that all patients who need to be seen now come to the practice when invited. This is much safer for you then it is for us to send out a nurse for a visit, as it minimises infection control risks from going house to house.
If you are coming to the practice please observe a distance of 2 metres between yourself and any other patient waiting to be seen.
If you are attending the practice for any reason, please wear a scarf to cover your mouth and nose, in order to protect yourself and others. If you are doing this when visiting the practice or when out and about please remember to wash your hands when you get home and to wash your scarf at 60 degrees.
We have a separate home visiting team each day for those with potential COVID-19 symptoms and for those who may have an increased risk from complications.
We have set up weekly virtual ward rounds for our care homes to minimise risk of infection to these groups.
All home visit requests are carefully assessed by phone first.
Do you need a repeat prescription?
We ask that if you are registered to do so you order your repeat prescriptions online.
We are also encouraging patients to sign up for the NHS App so that they can order their repeat prescriptions using the App going forward.
If you are not registered to order online then please email repeat prescription requests to the prescriptions team. Please include the patient name, date of birth, list of required medication and chosen pharmacy destination in your email.
Alternatively you can use our online form for repeat prescriptions and other prescription enquiries:
If you are self isolating please arrange for the prescription to be collected by a relative / friend / volunteer. If you need to arrange a delivery please contact your pharmacy destination directly. Unfortunately we are unable to help with delivery requests as these are managed by individual pharmacies.
Fit Notes / Other Requests
If you have symptoms of coronavirus or live with someone who has symptoms of coronavirus, you can get an isolation note to send to your employer as proof you need to stay off work. You do not need to get a fit note / sick note from your GP for this. We are experiencing a high number of calls about this but please do not contact the practice. Instead find out what to do here.
For the time being we will be posting all fit notes to patients. This will reduce the number of people coming into the practice.
Blood Pressure Checks
Where possible, we are encouraging patients to take their blood pressure at home. Patients can then send in their results via our online blood pressure results form.
Patients may wish to invest in their own blood pressure monitor, such as an Omron M2 machine. These are available in supermarkets, chemists or online for £20-25. If you are purchasing a monitor it is important it is an arm cuff monitor and NOT a wrist monitor. Alternatively you might be able to borrow a machine from family or friends. For regular monitoring the practice has a number of machines that can be loaned.
Do You Have Asthma?
If we have contacted you to say your asthma review is due (or it is overdue) please use our online questionnaire so we can update your records. You can access the questionnaire via our asthma page - click here.
We have temporarily closed the leg club that is held on a Wednesday morning at Frome Football Club. Instead, we are holding additional clinics and arranging pre-booked appointments on a Wednesday morning for users of the leg club who require dressings. Patients needing this service will have appointments pre-booked for them on a weekly basis.
Young People's Clinic
The young people's clinic has been temporarily suspended. Young people can contact the GP practice on 01373 301301 if needed and they can also access information on our Information For Young People pages.
Sharing updates with you
We are doing our best to communicate informaiton about coronavirus with our patients via the website and the local press. We are also sharing messages on social media. You can follow us on Twitter, Instagram and / or Facebook.
We would be grateful if you could also share our information with family / friends / neighbours who you are keeping in touch with who might not otherwise have access to our updates.
- Our latest practice update on coronavirus
- Volunteer to help find a vaccine
- Sign up for the NHS App
- How to avoid catching and spreading coronavirus
- What to do if you think you might have coronavirus
- Use of face coverings
- Information in different formats
- Information for patients who are shielding
- Support for people who are shielding
- Temporary changes to services
- Signs and symptoms
- Isolation notes
- Useful links