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Get the latest NHS information and advice about coronavirus (COVID-19)
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Find out about the main symptoms of coronavirus and what to do if you or your child has them.
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Advice for people at higher risk from coronavirus, including older people, people with health conditions and pregnant women.
Testing and tracing
Get a test to check if you have coronavirus, understand your test result and find out what to do if you're contacted by NHS Test and Trace.
People at high risk
Long-term effects (long COVID)
Find out about the long-term effects coronavirus can sometimes have and what help is available.
Social distancing and changes to everyday life
Advice about avoiding close contact with other people (social distancing), looking after your wellbeing and using the NHS and other services.
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Find out about health research studies and how you may be able to take part.
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We are aware that there are concerns being raised by members of the public following reports of blood clots in relation to the Oxford AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine the link below provides further information regarding this vaccine.
COVID VACCINE UPDATE
Group 1 - 9
We are pleased to update our patients that we have now offered a first vaccination by text to all patients in Group 1 - 9 that we have a valid mobile number for and will be calling all landline numbers or writing to patient who we have not been able to contact yet.
Please can we ask that patients respond to the text message to Book, Decline or Cancel if you have an appointment elsewhere so that we can remove you from our list of patients who still need a COVID Vaccination. If you are unsure of how to do this please email your response to the surgery and we will happily update your records.
General Email email@example.com
General Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Any patients who believe they qualify in Group 1 - 9 and have not been contacted via text please contact the surgery via email and we will be able to book you an appointment, click on the link to book your vaccine at a larger vaccine hub, or you can call 119.
COVID-19 VACCINE UPDATE
As per recent Government Guidelines, GP led vaccine centres continue to focus on Group 6 patients, those that are aged 16 - 65 with an underlying health condition and those that have recently been asked to shield. Our practice team will be inviting eligible patients for their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine using SMS text messaging.
NHS England are continuing to send invitations out via post, and now have started Group 7 which is people aged 60 and above. Please do book your appointment at a larger vaccine hubs if you can, this will speed up your appointment time. As we have been asked to focus on group 6, we will not be inviting group 7 patients at the moment.
If you are in Group 5- aged 65 plus, to avoid delay, we suggest you also book through the larger vaccine hubs if you are able to. We can offer you an appointment at our local vaccination site (Sidley Medical Practice) but this may be at a later date while we focus on the clinically vulnerable.
Please find below the link to book your vaccine at a larger vaccine hub, or you can call 119.
Thank you for your patience in the past week while vaccinations paused. We would like to update you that over the coming week we will be continuing to contact those in Groups 1 - 4 who have not yet been able to attend for vaccination as well as those who have recently been added to the Clinically Extremely Vulnerable List. Along with this, we will be inviting patients in Group 6 to attend for vaccination at Sidley Medical Practice.
Any patients who are in Group 5 and have received a letter from NHS England are encouraged to book their covid vaccination via 119. We would like to reassure any patients who are unable to travel or are medically housebound you will not be missed.
If you are not these Groups please DO NOT call the surgery regarding your vaccination if necessary we would appreciate you emailing the surgery where we will then respond as soon as possible to your query. We ask you to help us by doing this is for two reasons, one so we can reduce the pressures on the reception team enabling then to answer calls from patients of an urgent medical nature and two because some members of our surgery team are not currently working at the surgery site and would be unable to take your phone call.
As always, we really do appreciate your patience and understanding as we roll out this unprecedented vaccination programme.
Convalescent Plasma Programme – Be the difference
NHS Blood and Transplant (NHSBT) is leading an urgent programme on behalf of the Government to enable a planned UK medical trial that could produce a vital treatment for those with COVID-19.
The programme is seeking volunteers who had COVID-19 and are now recovering to donate plasma.
Convalescent plasma is the antibody-rich plasma of someone who has had COVID-19. It contains antibodies against the virus and can be transfused to patients with COVID-19 who are struggling to make their own immune system respond. This Plasma may help them recover from the infection and save lives.
NHSBT welcomes all plasma donations but are seeking donations in particular from recovering male patients aged 18-65. Men who have been hospitalised with COVID-19 are six times more likely to have the high antibody levels which might save lives.
Donating plasma is safe and easy and your body quickly replaces the donated antibodies. Donations are taken by NHS Blood and Transplant at one of its donor centres.
If you would like more information about donating plasma or would like to register to donate plasma, please visit https://www.nhsbt.nhs.uk/how-you-can-help/convalescent-plasma-clinical-trial/ or call 0300 123 23 23.
Thank you for taking the time to read this communication and we wish you a continued healthy recovery.
COVID-19 and your information – Updated on 8th April 2020
Supplementary privacy notice on Covid-19 for Patients
This notice describes how we may use your information to protect you and others during the Covid-19 outbreak. It supplements our main Privacy Notice which is listed below.
The health and social care system is facing significant pressures due to the COvid-19 outbreak. Health and care information is essential to deliver care to individuals, to support health and social care services and to protect public health. Information will also be vital in researching, monitoring, tracking and managing the outbreak. In the current emergency it has become even more important to share health and care information across relevant organisations.
Existing law which allows confidential patient information to be used and shared appropriately and lawfully I a public health emergency is being used during this outbreak. Using this law the Secretary of State has required NHS Digital; NHS England and Improvement; Arms Length Bodies (such as Public Health England); local authorities; health organisations and GPs to share confidential patient information to respond to the Covid-19 outbreak. Any information used or shared during the Covid-19 outbreak will be limited to the period of the outbreak unless there is another legal basis to use the data. Further information is available on gov.uk here and some FAQs on this law are available here.
During this period of emergency, opt-outs will not generally apply to the data used to support the Covid-19 outbreak, due to the public interest in sharing information. This includes National Data Opt-Outs. However in relation to the Summary Care Record, existing choices will be respected. Where data is used and shared under these laws your right to have personal data erased will also not apply. It may also take us longer to respond to Subject Access Requests (SARs), Freedom of Information requests (FOIs) and new opt out requests whilst we focus our efforts on responding to the outbreak.
In order to look after your health and care needs we may share your confidential patient information included health and care records with clinical and non-clinical staff in other health and care providers, for example neighbouring GP practices, hospitals and NHS 111. We may also use the details we have to send public health messages to you, either by phone, text message or email.
During this period of emergency we may offer you a consultation via telephone or video conferencing. By accepting the invitation and entering the consultation you are consenting to this. Your personal/confidential patient information will be safeguarded in the same way it would with any other consultation.
We will also be required to share personal confidential patient information with health and care organisations and other bodies engaged in disease surveillance for the purposes of protecting public health, providing healthcare services to the public and monitoring and managing the outbreak. Further information about how health and care data is being used and shared by other NHS and social care organisations in a variety of ways to support the Covid-19 response is here.
NHS England and Improvement and the NHSX have developed a single, secure store to gather data from across the health and care system to information the Covid-19 response. This includes data already collected by NHS England, NHS Improvement, Public Health England and NHS Digital. New data will include 999 call data, data about hospital occupancy and A&E capacity data as well as data provided by patient themselves. All the data held in the platform is subject to strict controls that meet the requirements of data protection legislation.
In such circumstances where you tell us you’re experiencing Covid-19 symptoms we may need to collect specific health data about you. Where we need to do so, we will not collect more information than we require and we will ensure that any information collected is treated with the appropriate safeguards.
The NHS is issuing a fresh warning to residents to be on their guard against fraudulent messages as new scams are being sent to patients.
This week there have been fresh reports that some people are receiving fake fraudulent calls, emails and text messages offering the COVID-19 vaccination.
In the most recent case people are receiving a notification of their ‘vaccination appointment’ and are being asked to confirm it by clicking on a link.
This looks very similar to the genuine texts being sent by GP practice vaccination teams and the NHS is worried people will be conned by them or will not respond to their genuine invitations. The NHS has this advice for patients:
If you are worried about a text message you have received, please be assured you will remain on your GP practice list for vaccination if you don't respond.