Important Flu Clinic Information
Child Influenza Vaccination
National Blood Bottle Shortage
We have recently been informed that there is a global shortgage of blood bottles which we use for taking blood tests.
Please do not be concerned if you require an urgent blood test as we will continue to carry these out as a priority if recommended by a clinician.
However, if you require a routine blood test we may need to postpone this until a later date until we recieve supplies. We apologise to any patients affected by this and would like to stress that this is completely out of our control.
If we do need to postpone your blood test, the surgery will contact you and let you know and we will get back in touch with you to re-book your test as soon as possible.
If you have an apppointment already booked, please double check you have not recived a message from the surgery to say this has been cancelled. We do not want patients making unnessary trips out if you do not need to.
If you have an appointment booked and we have not contacted you, then please attend your appointment as normal.
We are very sorry for any inconvienience caused and once we have an update on this situation, we will let you know.
11am – 12pm every Thursday
At Christ Church, Northmead Drive, Creekmoor
Come along and join us for a relaxed hour meeting other Carers with free
refreshments starting on the 23rd September 2021.
Everyone welcome we look forward to seeing you.
GP Telephone Consultations
Please be advised during the pandemic, if you wish to see a doctor face to face, you will need to recieve a telephone call first to triage your medical needs. If the doctor requires to see you face to face, they will book you to come in to the surgery as soon as possible.
Supporting patients following events in Afghanistan
We are conscious that some patients registered at the Birchwood Practice may be affected by current events in Afghanistan. The Birchwood is accredited by the Royal College of General Practitioners as one which specialises in the care of military veterans and their families. All the team have been trained in the care of military veterans and their families. If recent events have affected you and you wish to seek help, please come forward.
Carers Information Course & New Carers Pop Up Cafe
We wanted to let you know that we are looking at new ways we can help support your role as a carer.
We are excited to let you know we have events happening from September which is open to all carers:
Carers Information Course - Starting Thursday 23rd September at Christ Church, Northmead Drive, Creekmoor - running for 5 weeks - information is attached. Please note we only have 20 places available so early booking is advisable. To book your space please email us at Birchwood.Carers@dorsetgp.nhs.uk
Pop up café - 11am-12pm every Thursday at Christ Church, Northmead Drive, Creekmoor with free refreshments - starting 23rd September. Come and have a drink and a chat with other carers.
General Practice Data for Planning and Research - Update
Patient data from general practice has significantly contributed to the improvement of health and care services and treatments for many years. Patients rightly trust their GP to safeguard their data, a role that we know that all general practitioners take very seriously. This is why I am writing to share more information with you about how we are working to improve how this data is collected.
NHS Digital is making improvements to how data is collected from general practice, with a new framework for data extraction called the General Practice Data for Planning and Research (GPDPR) collection.
You will have seen the announcement to pause the collection of this data, to provide more time to engage with GPs, patients, health charities and others, and to strengthen the plan.
We are working in collaboration with a range of partners including the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) and the British Medical Association (BMA). I want to reassure you that we have heard your concerns loud and clear and will continue to listen.
I am writing now to provide an update on the four key areas of work to strengthen the plan. We hope this will foster your trust in the system and provide a strong basis for you and your patients to participate in the scheme with confidence.
Most importantly, I can confirm today that, while we are continuing to work on the infrastructure, and communication for the project, we are not setting a specific start date for the collection of data. Instead, we commit to start uploading data only when we have the following in place:
● the ability to delete data if patients choose to opt-out of sharing their GP data with NHS Digital, even if this is after their data has been uploaded;
● the backlog of opt-outs has been fully cleared;
● a Trusted Research Environment has been developed and implemented in NHS Digital;
● patients have been made more aware of the scheme through a campaign of engagement and communication.
In this letter each of these adjustments are set out, all of which are critical to the success and impact of the programme, including through better understanding of the huge benefits the programme will have to the NHS and to our ability to provide the best and safest possible care for patients.
We want to make the position around opt-out much simpler. While 1st September has been seen by some as a cut-off date for opt-out, after which data extraction would begin, I want to reassure you that this will not be the case and data extraction will not commence until we have met the tests.
We are introducing three changes to the opt-out system which mean that patients will be able to change their opt-out status at any time:
- Patients do not need to register a Type 1 opt-out by 1st September to ensure their GP data will not be uploaded;
- NHS Digital will create the technical means to allow GP data that has previously been uploaded to the system via the GPDPR collection to be deleted when someone registers a Type 1 opt-out;
- The plan to retire Type 1 opt-outs will be deferred for at least 12 months while we get the new arrangements up and running, and will not be implemented without consultation with the RCGP, the BMA and the National Data Guardian
Together, these changes mean that patients can have confidence that they will have the ability to opt-in or opt-out of the system, and that the dataset will always reflect their current preference. And we will ensure it is easy for them to exercise the choice to opt-out.
We have heard from many GPs and practices that there is concern about the administrative burden that Type 1 opt-outs have placed on you and your teams. We are in the process of working with colleagues across general practice to develop a way of simplifying and centralising the opt-out process in order to remove this burden on practices. This is still in development, but we will share further information with you in the coming weeks.
In the meantime, given the changes we have agreed to the opt-outs there is now no urgency to process Type 1 opt-outs specifically for GPDPR in order to get people opted out before September. We will keep you updated on timelines for when we expect the programme to go live.
We will also ensure that the NHS Digital Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) reflecting these changes to the programme is published well before data collection commences. A template DPIA for practice use will also be made available in good time to allow practices to complete it.
Data Security and Governance
The Government has committed that access to GP data will only be via a Trusted Research Environment (TRE) and never copied or shipped outside the NHS secure environment, except where individuals have consented to their data being accessed e.g. written consent for a research study. This is intended to give both GPs and patients a very high degree of confidence that their data will be safe and their privacy protected.
The TRE will be built in line with best practice developed in projects, such as OpenSAFELY and the Office for National Statistics’ Secure Research Service.
We are also committed to adopting a transparent approach, including publishing who has run what query and used which bit of data. We are developing a TRE which will meet our specific needs and act as “best in class”.
We commit to only begin the data collection once the TRE is in place. Further, we will ensure that the BMA, RCGP and the National Data Guardian have oversight of the proposed arrangements and are satisfied with them before data upload begins.
I can also confirm that the previously published Data Provision Notice for this collection has been withdrawn.
Once the data is collected, it will only be used for the purposes of improving health and care. Patient data is not for sale and will never be for sale.
Transparency, communications and engagement There has been a great deal of concern regarding the lack of awareness amongst the healthcare system and patients. We recognise that we need to strengthen engagement, including opportunities for non-digital engagement and communication. Since the programme has been paused, we have been developing an engagement and communications campaign, with the goal of ensuring that the healthcare system and patients are aware and understand what is planned, and can make informed choices. The public rightly look to and trust general practice - through a centrally driven communication campaign, with clear messages, we will seek to ensure that the introduction of this collection does not impose an additional burden on practices.
We are developing a communications strategy delivered through four phases.
● Listening - where we listen to stakeholders and gather views on how best to communicate with the profession, patients and the public and give them the opportunity to inform the development of the programme in areas such as opt-outs, trusted research environments and other significant areas;
● Consultation - a series of events where we can explain the programme, listen and capture feedback and co-design the information campaign;
● Demonstration - show how feedback is being used to develop the programme and shape communications to the healthcare system and the public;
● Delivery - of an information campaign to inform the healthcare system and the public about changes to how their GP data is used, that utilises the first three phases to ensure the campaign is accessible, has wide reach and is effective.
Data saves lives. The vaccine rollout for COVID-19 could not have been achieved without patient data. The discovery that the steroid Dexamethasone could save the lives of one third of the most vulnerable patients with COVID-19 – those on ventilators - could not have been made without patient data from GP practices in England. That insight has gone on to save a million lives around the globe. That is why this programme is so important.
The programme and I will be providing further information as the programme progresses. In the meantime, if you have any questions, you can contact the programme at firstname.lastname@example.org. The NHS Digital web pages also provide further information at https://digital.nhs.uk/data-and-information/data-collections-and-data-sets/data-collections/general-practice-data-for-planning-and-research#additional-information-for-gp-practices.
Thank you for your continued support.
Parliamentary under Secretary of State for Primary Care and Health Promotion
We are here to help
As we are still in the Covid pandemic, the NHS recommends that we triage or phone back every patient who wants advice from a nurse, doctor or other healthcare professional.
If you need medical advice or treatment, please ring us on 01202 697639
or visit our website birchwoodpractice.co.uk and send us your query
Our opening hours are 08.00am – 18.30pm
We ask many of the patients we have telephoned, to then come to the surgery for a face-to-face appointment, but due to infection control measures and social distancing, we can only let patients into the surgery if they have a planned appointment.
We are keen, as we are sure you are too, to avoid transmission of infection and so to ensure social distancing we are closely monitoring how many patients are in our building including sitting in the waiting room. We need to take more precautions than shops etc due to the vulnerability of some of our patients.
We know that some of these measures are frustrating for you as they are for us. We are facing unprecedented demands with a huge increase in the number of calls we are receiving and the need for us all to catch up with the monitoring of patients which was not possible in the height of the pandemic.
We all look forward to lockdown measures continuing to ease but in the meantime, many thanks for your patience and understanding
Dr Goodworth and Partners/Practice Manager
During Covid 19 we are here for all our Patients and are happy to accept new patients within our Bounadary Area
If you would like to regiaster with us you can download the Registration Forms from the New Patients section of this website
Male Cancer Awareness
MAKING MEN AWARE OF CANCER
Cancer rates are increasing Nationally; cancer can impact everyone, directly or indirectly. Though men have higher rates of getting cancer than women, they are less likely to go to their GP with concerning symptoms than women.
There are more than 200 different types of cancer and some are most prevalent in men than women. The three cancers that men are most at risk of are prostate cancer, bowel cancer and lung cancer. Other male specific cancers include testicular and penile cancer.
Research has shown that men are often too embarrassed to seek medical advice when potential early warning signs show. Men are reluctant to access services because they are often concerned about the risks of doing so or the potential outcomes for their family or work. Early detection and early treatment are vital.
Men over 70 are less likely to present to their GP with worrisome cancer symptoms. Reasons for this included:-
(a) they don’t want to worry their partners or family members;
(b) often state that they are too busy to see their GP;
(c) fear around the diagnosis and having an intimate examination;
In general, men over 70 years are not good at discussing their health problems or potential harmful symptoms to friends and family.
One way in which you can detect cancer early is by staying up to date with National screening programmes such as the Bowel Cancel Screening Programme. Men should also be aware of certain symptoms which should be presented to a GP. These include:-
(a) persistent cough;
(b) unexplained weight loss;
(c) change in bowel habit;
(d) passing urine frequently;
(e) blood in your stool or urine;
(f) checking for lumps in your testicle and breast areas.
We want to make sure men of all ages across our Practices are seeking help and advice on symptoms that are worrying them. We want to assure you that you can speak to us in a safe and confidential environment. We are hear to help.
PROSTATE CANCER FACTS AND FIGURES.
Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in the UK.
In the UK, about 1 in 8 men will get prostate cancer in their lifetime.
Prostate cancer mainly affects men over 50, and your risk increases with age. The risk is even higher for black men and men with a family history of prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer can develop when cells in the prostate gland start to grow in an uncontrolled way.
The prostate is a gland. It is usually the size and shape of a walnut and grows bigger as you get older. It sits underneath the bladder and surrounds the urethra, which is the tube that carries urine (wee) out of the body. The prostate's main job is to help make semen – the fluid that carries sperm.
Some prostate cancer grows too slowly to cause any problems or affect how long you live. Because of this, many men with prostate cancer will never need any treatment.
But some prostate cancer grows quickly and is more likely to spread. This is more likely to cause problems and needs treatment to stop it spreading.
Prostate cancer that’s contained inside the prostate (called localised prostate cancer or early prostate cancer) doesn’t usually cause any symptoms.
But some men might have some urinary problems. If you do notice changes in the way you urinate, this is more likely to be a sign of a very common non-cancerous problem called an enlarged prostate, or another health problem. But it’s still a good idea to get it checked out. Possible changes include:
- difficulty starting to urinate or emptying your bladder
- a weak flow when you urinate
- a feeling that your bladder hasn’t emptied properly
- dribbling urine after you finish urinating
- needing to urinate more often than usual, especially at night
- a sudden need to urinate – you may sometimes leak urine before you get to the toilet.
If any of the above information worries you or you know someone it might, please phone your GP surgery for an appointment with your GP.
COVID-19 Useful Links
We are pleased to announce we are offering a weekly contraceptive clinic at our Northmead drive Surgery.
We will be able to offer the following:Implants
- Mirena coils
- Coil checks
- Coil removals
This is open to both registered and non- registered patients (non-registered patients will need to complete a Temporary Resident form.
To book an appointment or for further details please contact the surgery on 01202 697639.
Red Hub Sites
During the current Covid-19 outbreak, patients experiencing certain symptoms (breathing issues and / or fever) and who have been telephone assessed by a GP to need a face to face examination will be called to one of our local 'Red Hubs'.
Your local Primary Care Assessment Service is Fernside Surgery, 2A Hennings Road, Poole BH15 3QU
If you need to be seen, please ring your own practice who will add you to a list for triage, then they will give you a time to attend the hot site if needed.
Process if you attend the hot site:
Please do not arrive more than 5 minutes before your appointment time as parking may be limited.
When you arrive WAIT IN THE CAR and call 01202-673520 to inform reception:
- If you are in your car you will be asked for your car registration, make and colour.
- Please have this information available.
When it is your turn.
- A member of staff - who will be wearing full protective equipment - will come to the car park to invite you in.
- You will be given a mask to wear into the Red Hub. You must always wear this during the assessment.