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Help in the community: Pulling Together Ludlow
If there is any further news/information relating specifically to coronavirus, we will add it below.
Please keep an eye on our website news section - and also on our Facebook page - for other news and information.
For information about coronavirus tests & to order one, please visit https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/testing-and-tracing/get-a-test-to-check-if-you-have-coronavirus/ or call 119. If you (or a member of your household) has a positive test, the whole household must isolate.
Vaccinations: When it is your turn, you may be contacted either by the Surgery or the Shropshire/National teams. To book your appointment, follow the instructions in the letter/text that you have received. Remember that the vaccination is available free of charge and that the NHS will never ask for bank details to confirm your identity. If you think your group has been called but you have not yet booked your vaccination, you can go on to www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination or call 119.
FREE TRANSPORT TO VACCINATION APPOINTMENTS - If you or someone you know is worried about getting to their vaccination appointment, Shropshire Council can help. Residents who are without access to transport are now able to get FREE transport to their COVID-19 vaccination appointments. In order to get help, you must have had a letter inviting you for vaccination in Shropshire, and you must be unable to get there any other way. They will be able to provide transport to help you get to your appointment and back. All vehicles will have appropriate ventilation, with strict infection control measures in place to keep everyone safe. Transport can be booked by calling the COVID-19 Helpline on 0345 678 9028.
UNPAID CARERS: If you are an unpaid carer aged 16-64 and receive a carer's allowance, call 119 to book your vaccination. Otherwise, please call the COVID-19 Helpline on 0345 678 9011 during opening hours (Monday-Friday 8am-6pm and Saturday 9am-1pm) - they will be support you to register as a carer and can then book you for a vaccination.
Thursday 8th April
Key Information regarding the AstraZeneca (AZ) Vaccination:
1. The benefits of vaccination against Covid-19 still far outweigh the risks for the vast majority of patients and this is particularly apparent the older we get. But in younger age groups, i.e. those under 30, where the risks from complications from Covid are far less frequent, the risk of a very rare clotting complication appears to be more finely balanced.
2.We are continuing to vaccinate. All second doses of the AZ vaccine will continue as planned in cohorts 1-9 (those aged over 50 and those who are younger but with a condition that puts them at greater risk from the complications of Covid).
3. For patients aged over 30 who are healthy and have no additional risk factors, such as health & social care workers, household contacts for those who are immunosuppressed, the AZ vaccines will also continue.
4. However, if you are aged 29 or younger or you have additional risk factors (if you have previously suffered an unusual clot with a low platelet count from the AZ vaccine or you have a history of some other types of rare clotting disorders), we will offer you an alternative vaccine to AZ, for example Pfizer.
5. If you are under 30 and due to have your first vaccination now, you will need to have a conversation with a clinician at whatever site you are attending about your vaccine – you may need to consider an alternative vaccine and delay your vaccine protection briefly while an alternative appointment is organised for you.
6. If you are under 30 and/or have a potential contraindication to the AZ vaccine, and you have been booked into a vaccination clinic via the National Booking Service for Friday this week, you will be contacted and your clinic appointment cancelled. You will be advised to book a vaccine appointment via your GP or local vaccination service who will discuss the risks and benefits and support to you to identify the vaccine that is best for you.
To read the government statement regarding the AZ vaccine, please visit https://www.gov.uk/.../jcvi-statement-on-use-of-the...
Thursday 11th March
We are fully aware of the evidence from the studies relating to the effectiveness of the Covid vaccination in cancer patients. We are in discussion with the CCG and NHS England regarding this. There has been no change in the guidelines as yet, but if we receive news of any changes then we will get in touch with the individual patients affected to let them know what is happening. If you are still concerned and need to contact us, please email us at email@example.com
Friday 5th February
Update on where we are: "Heading into the end of week 2 - Mass Vaccination Programme".
"How many have you done?", "Where are you?", "What are your numbers?"... these are some of the questions that we are sure are in our patients minds. As we head into our second weekend of the mass vaccination programme, we can confirm that by Sunday midday (after our clinic on Sunday morning at Ludlow hospital) we will be in a position to move onto cohort 5, vaccinating patients below 69, from next week.
We aren't unique in meeting this achievement; and although our team has moved mountains to attain these figures (with all doctors, nurses and reception staff working at the surgery, the Church Stretton vaccination clinics, our clinics at Ludlow hospital, the Ludlow racecourse site alongside shifts across the county for other areas), all the Practices across the SW (Clun, Bishops Castle, Church Stretton, Craven Arms and Ludlow) have achieved this coverage alongside us. Our care homes are done, our home visits are being completed for the housebound patients and our surgery continues to offer routine appointments, emergency appointments, usual clinics and evening appointments.
Why no running totals? Well, although we think these are great and a way to celebrate what is being achieved, we are mindful that the pandemic has been a tragic time for many of our patients who have lost loved ones and sadly the vaccinations have come too late for some. So in respect of the patients and relatives we have lost to this virus we would prefer to continue doing things like we always have; in a quiet consistent, calm manner with minimal fuss - focusing on the task in hand only.
Will we get everyone vaccinated? Yes, absolutely. We will continue working alongside our neighbouring practices heading through the cohorts until every single patient who wishes to have a vaccination receives one. Sometime this will mean going back to patients in earlier cohorts because they were too unwell at the time of their first invitation to have the vaccination, or they have changed their minds.
Do you need to contact us for a vaccination? No. We have dedicated time from our senior receptionists to contact every patient registered with us when they are due their vaccine. Call us once you receive your letter or text and we will book you into a slot, at a time you can make and an accessible venue for you, we will also book your second vaccination on this call.
Who will give you your vaccine? Mostly we will - your doctors and nurses - but sometimes our colleagues might see you if you go to the racecourse or Church Stretton (just like we will see some of their patients).
So in summary, this is good news. As a group, we have raced through these vaccines and are on track now with our national targets.
Thank you for being patient, for staying at home, for supporting our staff and looking after each other
Dr Graham Cook, Dr Caron Morton & Dr David Mitchell
Friday 29th January
We hope that the weather will not affect our weekend clinics. These vaccines are so precious and must not go to waste. However, please read the following information in case of problems.
If you are booked in for a Covid-19 vaccination on Saturday at Ludlow Hospital and cannot attend due to snow, please call us 07494 596245. This phone will be answered between 8.30am and 12.30pm on Saturday morning ONLY, and can be used to cancel Saturday appointments at Ludlow Hospital only. Please note that this mobile number is not for general use and will not be manned at any other time. If you can safely attend your appointment then please do so.
If you are booked in for a Covid-19 vaccination at Church Stretton and cannot attend due to snow, there is not currently a number to call. If you do not attend, please wait for us to contact you when we have further clinics set up. We do not know when this will be, so please do not call the surgery - we will call you. If you can safely attend your appointment then please do so.
Monday 25th January
Great news: Vaccine delivery dates for next week have been confirmed! The South West Shropshire Primary Care Network starts its vaccination programme against Covid-19 for eligible patients from Thursday, January 28th and we shall be vaccinating throughout the weekend of January 30th. We shall be working together as a group of practices, from the Health & Wellbeing Centre, in Church Stretton. The team will be made up of GPs, nurses, health care assistants and administrative staff from all our practices in Ludlow, Church Stretton, Craven Arms, Clun and Bishops Castle. We will still be running our usual range of services and appointments at the practice.
Our first cohort of patients will be the over 80s (cohort 2). The vaccine we shall be receiving first is the Pfizer vaccine. This cannot move from our ‘receiving site’ in Church Stretton and this is why you may be asked to attend an appointment there instead of at the practice. We will start contacting the over 80s from Monday, January 25th. We will be offering you a date and a time for your vaccine appointment. Please come to that appointment and get your vaccine. The sooner you are vaccinated, the sooner we can protect our community.
We understand that some of our patients are housebound or will have insurmountable difficulties getting to Church Stretton. There is a smaller amount of the Astra Zeneca vaccine available which is easier to transport and take out to practices and into people’s homes. There will be some vaccination appointments available at the practice but as the bulk of the vaccination delivery is Pfizer, the majority of the vaccination programme to start with, will take place at Church Stretton. As Pfizer stocks go down and Astra Zeneca supplies go up, we will be able to deliver more vaccine locally. However we need to vaccinate the over 80s as quickly as possible so that we can move onto the next cohort of patients vulnerable to complications from Covid-19.
Thank you again for your support and understanding and for following the guidelines to stay safe.
Please understand that we may need to cancel and re-book your vaccination appointment if there is a hold-up with the weekly delivery of vaccine or we don’t get as much as we expect. This is a national problem and out of our hands. If that is the case, we shall contact you and offer another appointment. You DO NOT need to contact us. Please do not worry, you will receive your vaccine.
Please note: A vaccination hub will also be opened at Ludlow Racecourse on February 1st as part of the national vaccination campaign. This will be centrally run and will operate alongside our vaccine clinics in practice. As a patient you will receive both an invitation from your practice to be vaccinated and a letter from NHS England to attend the racecourse. Patients are free to use either option. Your health records will reflect the same information stating you have received the vaccine. You do not need to contact your surgery. What’s important is that you get your vaccine as soon as possible to protect you and your community. When you get your first vaccine, you will be given an appointment for your second vaccine. Thank you.
Wednesday 20th January
The invitations for the Covid-19 vaccinations are being sent out according to our priority lists.
Please be assured that nobody will be missed!
There are vaccines for everyone and we will invite you at the earliest opportunity when it is your turn.
Tuesday 19th January
We would like to reassure you that the vaccine IS coming and we guarantee you WILL get it!
All the GP surgeries in the South Shropshire Primary Care Network have the staff, the venues, and all the logistics in place... we are all ready to deliver it as soon as it is received. You will be contacted by your surgery when it is time for you to book your appointment. The message is, "Please do not phone us… we will contact you!"
To avoid long queues, appointment dates and times will be allocated to each patient. Due to the complexities of supply and delivery of the vaccines, which is out of our control, we may need to rearrange your appointment at short notice. But please be assured that we WILL vaccinate you as soon as we are able.
Thursday 14th January
Fantastic news - We are able to start giving the Covid-19 vaccinations at the surgery and will be starting from Monday 25th January! We will be vaccinating at Ludlow Hospital and also here at the surgery, and will be rolling out the vaccines as quickly as we can. We have already vaccinated the staff & residents at many of our care homes, and are very keen to start on the next eligible cohort groups. We would politely ask you not ring the surgery to ask about the vaccinations. WE WILL CONTACT YOU. The staff are incredibly busy at the surgery organising the vaccination clinics alongside all our usual services, and we also need to keep the phone lines available for our medical queries. Please be reassured that we will roll out the vaccines as safely and speedily as we can.
If you work in a care home, nursing home or a domiciliary carer then please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know. Please include details of where you work so that this can be recorded in your medical record. This is so that we can offer you a covid vaccine as part of cohort 2.
Monday 11th January / Tuesday 12th January
- A press release has been issued from the NHS Covid-19 Vaccination Service. Read it by clicking here.
- Questions about the virus, the vaccines and vaccine delivery have been answered by Dr Caron Morton (Station Drive Surgery), Dr Catherine Beanland (Portcullis Surgery), and Rachel Robinson (Director of Public Health for Shropshire). The article is based on information available on 8th January 2021. Information on Covid-19 and the rollout of the vaccination programme is changing daily and we will try to keep you up to date as information changes. Please click here to read the full information: Covid Question & Answer Session
- We are having enquiries from a growing number of people keen to volunteer and help with the vaccination programme in the area - thank you all. Shropshire RCC and Shropshire Youth Association (SYA) are working with the county's health and care organisations to lead a volunteer recruitment campaign to support local rapid testing and vaccination services. For information and to sign up, visit https://www.shropshire-rcc.org.uk/supp.../covid-19-volunteer
Thursday 7th January
The NHS vaccination programme is underway in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin as part of the national rollout. NHS England will be contacting the people in the priority groups when it is their turn to receive the vaccine. People are being called forward who meet the criteria based on the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation’s recommendations.
Angie Wallace, the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme Director for Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin, has said: “We are working hard to ensure that that everyone who needs a vaccine is able to get one. We are now working through plans to deliver the vaccine by the middle of February to the four top priority groups. These include all residents in a care home for older adults and their carers, everyone over the age of 70, all frontline health and social care workers, and everyone who is clinically extremely vulnerable. We expect vaccine supply to increase, particularly now a further vaccine has been approved for use. This is good news, and will help enable us to increase the number of people we can vaccinate over the coming weeks, however, it will take time to roll the programme out across the county but be assured we are working hard to do this as quickly as is safely possible. I would urge the public to come forward when they are called up for the vaccine and to make sure they attend their appointments. Please do not contact your practice or the NHS for a vaccine; you will be contacted by the NHS when it is your turn.”
FOR THE FULL INFORMATION, PLEASE FOLLOW THIS LINK: https://www.shropshireccg.nhs.uk/.../shropshire-telford.../
For more information about the COVID-19 vaccine please visit: https://www.nhs.uk/.../coronavirus.../coronavirus-vaccine/
Tuesday 5th January 2021
We would just like to update you following the Prime Minister's announcement of a further National Lockdown from 6th January for a minimum of 6 weeks.
The Practice remains open, Monday to Friday as usual. We will continue to see patients face-to-face as normal for routine and emergency appointments, as we always have done throughout the pandemic. We will continue to use the telephone triage system, meaning you will have a callback from a clinician first.
All screening appointments will continue:
- cervical screening
- postnatal appointments
- child immunisations
- review of long term conditions
We will continue to provide home visits for housebound patients who require medical treatment.
We would also like to remind patients that having the seasonal flu vaccination is more important than ever. Please contact the surgery as soon as possible if you have not yet had your flu vaccination and think you are eligible.
We were very proud to administer the first Covid-19 vaccinations to the residents of Hagley Place at the weekend. Hopefully these vaccinations will be rolled out to other cohorts of patients as quickly as possible by NHS England, and we will keep you updated.
Dr Graham Cook, Dr Caron Morton & Dr David Mitchell
Thursday 31st December
On behalf of the Partners, we would like to wish you all the best for the New Year.
As your doctors, we are aware of how hard the year has been for many of you. The impact of isolation, loss of jobs and sadly losing loved ones to coronavirus has left many of us with a great sadness as we move into the next year.
Nothing can undo what has happened in the past 12 months but we are hopeful that the news of the coronavirus vaccination programme starting in town on Saturday, with our first Care Home residents receiving their vaccines, may give a glimmer of hope for a return to normality in 2021.
Our plan will be to roll out the vaccine programme working with our neighbouring practices across the South West Shropshire Area over the coming weeks.
Alongside this, the surgery will continue to function as normal, with routine and emergency appointments available, chronic disease clinics, childhood immunisations and screening programmes, as well as counselling and other support services remaining available to you as usual.
We would like to thank our team of staff who have worked tirelessly in 2020 and supported us as doctors and you as patients.
Finally we would like to thank you for your ongoing support to the surgery and to wish you, your families and friends a much better year ahead.
Dr Graham Cook, Dr Caron Morton & Dr David Mitchell
Tuesday 22nd December
"Important information to keep you safe while isolating at home" - we have added the leaflet to our our Useful Links at the top of this page. Please have a read.
Thursday 17th December
We have been receiving lots of calls enquiring about the Covid vaccination programme. As of yet we do not have exact details of dates for the vaccinations to begin (this is unfortunately out of our control) but we sincerely hope it will be within the next few weeks. We will update you as soon as we have any further clarification.
Published: Dec 22, 2020