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Calling Your Practice

Our surgery receives large number of calls every day and we appreciate that sometimes you need to wait longer in the queue to be connected with our reception team. This can be very frustrating.

Please where possible refrain from calling the practice between 8am – 10am unless you need an appointment with one of our doctors.

For everything else including appointments with our nurses, pharmacists and other health professionals, blood forms, sick note etc please call after 10am.

This will reduce number of patients in the queue first thing in the morning therefore shortening waiting time to be connected.

Please also remember we can assist with administrative queries via our online consulting system Contact us about your request (accurx.com)

Happy Hearts – Together we can reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke during Covid-19

Health services, local authorities, charities and other partners across Cheshire and Merseyside are working together to prevent heart attacks and strokes.

The Cheshire and Merseyside Happy Hearts website is aimed at helping you to reduce your risk of stroke and heart attack by giving you lots of information and tips on keeping your heart happy. The website shares local, practical information on:

  • how to live healthily and stay well
  • conditions that increase the chances of having a heart attack or stroke, such as
    • atrial fibrillation
    • high blood pressure
    • high cholesterol
  • how and where you can get your numbers checked
  • how you can help to manage and control these conditions to lower your CVD risk

Visit the Cheshire and Merseyside Happy Hearts website to find out more.

Provision of services outside the normal practice hours

As you may be aware the NHS England (who commission our practices services) have set out a requirement that practices work together to ensure that patients are able to access services outside our normal hours of work (8.00am to 6.30pm Monday to Friday).

Northwich PCN (Primary Care Network) covers the following practices:

Danebridge Medical Centre

Firdale Medical Centre

Middlewich Road Surgery

Oakwood Medical Centre

Weaverham Medical Centre

Witton Street Surgery

Watling Street Medical Practice

Northwich PCN has produced a plan based on services being provided from the individual practices and from a local practice-based Hub on Friday and Saturday.

This way of working is not new to us, we have been providing so called Extended Access services for the last five years, including the ability for our patients to access services locally on Saturdays.

The times we provide extended access services from our practice bases have been determined by analysing the preferences of our patients over the last five years, in particular we have been keen to offer services to enable patients who work a distance away from the practice to access services.

Each practice is currently publicising when services are available and we are proposing to add further services to our existing provision, from October 2022.

In addition to the services provided from each practice we are working with our neighbouring practices to offer appointments across the week and on Saturdays. As always, the availability of appointments will be dependent on our capacity, however, please ask the practice receptionist if you would ideally like an appointment outside the normal core hours. It is important to stress that the number of appointments offered outside the normal hours will only be a small proportion of our total appointments, as it is important that we do not undermine our normal level of service particularly given the current high levels of demand and our workforce challenges.

As we have stated we are sure that the time our practices provide services (outside of core hours) reflects the preferences of our patients, but we would be pleased to hear your views so that we can continue to evaluate the best times to offer services.

Patients Wearing Face Covering at Firdale Medical Centre

Following recent NHS update our rules regarding face covering are changing.

From Thursday 16th June wearing face covering or face mask is no longer compulsory for our patients except for those who present with respiratory symptoms.

Although wearing the face covering is no longer compulsory for majority of our patients we still strongly encourage everyone to do so especially if you are in the high risk group.

You will notice that our clinicians may still wear the face covering in some circumstances depending on the level of risk and the type of medical issue they are assisting with.

We would like to thank all of you who accepted the necessary precautions we implemented during the pandemic.

Serious Shortage Protocol for HRT gels

The NHSBSA have released new Serious Shortage Protocols (SSPs) for HRT products.

The SSPs apply to Oestrogel pump gel, Sandrena 0.5mg and 1mg gel sachets and Lenzetto spray.

Pharmacies are now allowed to switch patients to patches if they are unable to obtain a supply of the gels.

Pharmacies are also allowed to restrict the quantities to 3 months’ supply without contacting the prescriber.

Local pharmacies have been contacted to ensure they are aware of the SSPs.

Please note that you do not need to contact your GP, your Pharmacist will be able to look into this for you.

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