Category Archive News

Covid Booster News

  • Spring booster COVID-19 vaccination appointments are available in Cheshire now for: People aged 75+, residents of care homes for older adults and people aged 12+ who have a weakened immune system.
  • If eligible, the quickest and easiest way to arrange a Spring booster vaccination is online via the National Booking Service (or by calling 119).
  • In line with national guidance, Spring booster vaccinations are predominantly being administered in pharmacies. There is no need to contact your GP practice.
  • Everyone who is eligible will receive a national letter from the NHS over the Spring and early Summer inviting them for a top-up.
  • Locally, eligible residents who are able to attend a vaccination centre – but live in areas not covered by a GP-led site – will receive a further letter from the local NHS to outline their local vaccination options.

More information about Cheshire’s COVID-19 Vaccination Programme – including sites offering walk-in Spring booster vaccinations – is available here.

Phlebotomy Services Booking Changes

From Friday 1st April a new online system will allow you to easily book an appointment at your preferred location.

Too book an appointment please follow this link: https://patientconnect.uhnm.nhs.uk/

A patient booking guide can be found here: https://youtu.be/L_-Oxtg7l1A

Face masks must be worn when visiting our practice.

Please remember we need you to wear a face covering or a face mask when visiting our practice. If you have medical exemption please contact our reception prior to your arrival so that we can establish the safest way to support your needs

Important information regarding the Covid-19 Booster Vaccines

It was announced on Sunday, 12 December 2021, that the NHS will offer a booster vaccination booking to every adult by the end of December in response the Omicron variant.

Please note that you should not contact your GP Practice to book your booster jab, you should use the National Booking Service or call 119. Some vaccination sites may offer a walk-in service but the best way to ensure you get a jab is to make an appointments through the nationals booking service.

General practice is working hard to support the covid-19 vaccination programme, but we are still here for you but the way you access care may be different:

  • Face-to-face appointments are available to all patients where there is a clinical need. You will be asked to first discuss your conditions over the phone or online with a member of the healthcare team to assess what would be most appropriate for you and which practice member would best provide it.
  • Most common conditions can be assessed and diagnosed by your doctor by telephone or video consultation. They are experienced and skilled in doing this. Using technology like this will help to protect you, your family and loved ones – and GP practice staff from the potential risk of the virus.
  • General practice services are extremely busy and are working hard to treat as many patients as possible.

Please note that GP practices have been asked by NHS and the government to redeploy their staff and focus on delivery of COVID-19 vaccinations

Please note that GP practices have been asked by NHS and the government to redeploy their staff and focus on delivery of COVID-19 vaccinations. You might have also heard Prime Misters announcement during the weekend.

This may have an impact on routine appointment availability and affect Firdale Medical Centre as we are supporting Northwich PCN in delivery of vaccinations. We will strive to remain accessible to all our patients and do everything we can to ensure the impact of the staff redeployment request is minimal.

Please be patient as we deliver this crucial piece of work.

Proof of Medical Exemption – Covid-19 Vaccination

Some individuals are unable to be vaccinated and also, in some cases, tested for medical reasons. You can apply for proof that you have a medical reason why you should not be vaccinated or why you should not be vaccinated and tested.

If you get this proof of medical exemption you’ll be able to use the NHS COVID Pass wherever you need to prove your COVID-19 status within England.

Until 24 December 2021, you can self-certify that you’re medically exempt if you work or volunteer in a care home.

Some businesses in England choose to use the NHS COVID Pass as a condition of entry. Until 24 December, businesses can decide whether to allow in people who self-declare that they’re medically exempt.

From 25 December, if you’re unable to get vaccinated, you’ll have to use the NHS COVID Pass in the same way that people who are fully vaccinated use it.

For full information on the requirements for proof regarding being exempt from Covid-19 vaccination please visit https://www.gov.uk/guidance/covid-19-medical-exemptions-proving-you-are-unable-to-get-vaccinated

Clarification on Covid Face Covering Exemption Cards/Certificates

With the new legal requirements regarding face coverings coming into effect in England, we thought it might be useful to explain when and who requires a covid exemption card/certificate.

If you have an age, health or disability reason for not wearing a face covering:

  • You do not routinely need to show any written evidence of this
  • You do not need to show an exemption card

This means that you do not need to seek advice or request a letter from a medical professional about your reason for not wearing a face covering.

However, if you feel more comfortable showing something that says you do not have to wear a face covering, this could be in the form of an exemption card, badge or sign. Carrying an exemption card or badge is a personal choice and not required by law.

If you wish to use an exemption card or badge, you can download and print out or show these templates: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/face-coverings-when-to-wear-one-and-how-to-make-your-own

Exemptions from face coverings

In settings where face coverings are required in England, there are some circumstances where people may not be able to wear them, so please be mindful and respectful of such circumstances.

Some people are less able to wear face coverings, and the reasons for this may not be visible to others.

This includes (but is not limited to):

  • children under the age of 11 (The UK Health and Security Agency does not recommend face coverings for children under the age of 3 for health and safety reasons)
  • people who cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability
  • people for whom putting on, wearing or removing a face covering will cause severe distress
  • people speaking to or providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading, clear sound or facial expressions to communicate
  • to avoid the risk of harm or injury to yourself or others
  • police officers and other emergency workers, given that this may interfere with their ability to serve the public

There are also scenarios when you are permitted to remove a face covering:

  • if asked to do so in a bank, building society, or post office for identification
  • if asked to do so by shop staff or relevant employees for identification, for assessing health recommendations (for example by a pharmacist) or for age identification purposes, including when buying age restricted products such as alcohol
  • in order to take medication