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Noticeboard

December 2018 The Creamer Fund raffle will be held here 10-19 December.  Any suitable prizes will be gratefully received and can be left with our reception team.  CREAMER are looking for Volunteers to assist selling tickets 10-19.  Please leave your contact number with reception and their Social Secretary Sylvia Gould will contact you. 

Extended Access and Care Navigation Update

The new care navigation system has been working really well so far. We are delighted that a pharmacist and an advanced nurse practitioner have now joined our team. In addition to these in-house appointments, there are also extended access appointments that our patients can access at weekends and in the evenings. These are held in Chelmsford, Halstead and Braintree. Please ask reception if you would prefer to see someone out of our opening hours at another location.

Aug 2018

Care Navigation

The Freshwell Management have recently been finding ways to diversify the clinical team at the surgery to add further expertise and capacity. Since February we have had an MSK specialist and from next month we will have a pharmacist available in-house. We also hope to recruit a nurse practitioner in the near future. On 3rd Sept we will be introducing a national process called Care Navigation. This involves the reception team asking why you are requesting an appointment. This information will be used to ensure that you are directed to the most appropriate clinician or service. When asked, please give a brief reason eg knee pain or medication review. Please be assured that all staff at Freshwell sign a confidentiality agreement and understand the importance of keeping your information safe and secure.

July 2018

Your Data Matters to the NHS

Information about your health and care helps the NHS to improve your individual care, speed up diagnosis, plan your local services and research new treatments. 

Since May 2018, the strict rules about how this data can and cannot be used were strengthened.  The NHS is committed to keeping patient information safe and always being clear about how it is used.

You can choose whether your confidential patient information is used for research and planning. 

To find out more visit: www.nhs.uk/your-nhs-data-matters or call 0300 303 5678

If you have already opted out of data sharing you will NOT need to opt out again.

May 2018

With the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) coming into effect from 25th May 2018 we have been busy updating our policies to reflect the increased security surrounding your data.  As part of our on-going commitment to data security you can now read and download our privacy notice along with our information leaflet on our website under further information or click here

http://www.freshwell.co.uk/info.aspx?p=7

April 2018

NHS England have advised the Mid Essex Clinical Commissioning Group that they must encourage all member practices to reduce the money spent on prescribing OTC (Over the Counter) medicines.

In the first instance, we will no longer be prescribing the following medicines to patients aged 18 year and over: cetirizine & loratadine tablets, sodium cromoglicate eye drops, beclometasone (beconase) or fluticasone (flixonase) nasal sprays.  You will need to buy these from a chemist in future.

Click here for further information http://www.freshwell.co.uk/info.aspx?p=6

 

February 2018

When you book an appointment, please let the receptionist know a brief reason why you need to see a clinician. This will allow them to book you in with the most appropriate person. Thanks to CREAMER funding, we now have a Orthopaedic Specialist Practitioner working here twice a week. He is able to give advice regarding musculoskeletal injuries. You can book to see him directly without a referral from one of our doctors.

January 2018

Think #3beforeGP

The Royal College of General Practitioners is currently running a campaign asking everyone to help alleviate the pressure on GP Practices across the UK.  It simply asks you to consider....

Before making a GP appointment, can I?

1) self-care

2) use NHS Choices or a similar reputable UK resource

3) seek advice from a pharmacist

December 2017

To improve communication we are introducing a new FREE text message appointment booking confirmation and reminder service for all patients aged 18yrs and over.  If you would like to be included in this service please make sure we have your current mobile number.

If we already have your mobile phone number you will receive a text messaging asking if you would like to opt in/out of this service.  If you choose to opt out this can be done by a simple return of text, but you can always opt in at a later date if you change your mind.

If you remain opted in you will start to receive text messages to confirm your appointment giving you the option to cancel your appointment directly by return of text.

Our plan is to expand this service to allow us to inform you if a clinic has been cancelled, the flu jabs are now available or if the Doctor would like you to book an appointment to discuss recent test results.

Please help us to keep your records up to date by informing us on any changes to your mobile telephone numbers to ensure you continue to be included in this text messaging service.

October 2017

Our children's flu vaccines have now arrived. Children who were 2 or 3 on 31st August 2017 are eligible. Please ring for an appointment if you would like your child vaccinated. Primary school aged children will be vaccinated at school.

We have now installed hearing loops at both the reception and dispensary counters. We would like to thank The CREAMER Fund for financing this important improvement to our practice for patients who are hard of hearing. We have added signs to each counter to help them know where to stand for the best reception. There is also a portable device available for use in the consultation rooms. Please ask at reception if you would like this to be made available when seeing a doctor or nurse. the portable device can be used without a hearing aid if necessary.

September 2017

We are now taking bookings for our flu clinic on Saturday 7th October. Eligible ADULT patients (over 65s, pregnant women, carers, patients with certain chronic diseases, immunosuppressed and obese patients) should phone reception to book. Further information relating to flu vaccinations for children will follow shortly.

August 2017

Our Summer 2017 Newsletter is now on the website and available to download.  Head over to the newsletters page to find what has been happening behind the scenes at Freshwell Health Centre.

4th July 2017

Building works are currently underway at the surgery. Because we are having a new reception counter fitted the main entrance is not in use. Please follow the signs to enter at the rear of the building. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

June 2017

Please note that due to a technical error on the website previous news items have been lost.

GP Net Earnings

GP Net Earnings

Publication of Average Earnings

Government requires GPs to publish their earnings

 

Freshwell Health Centre provides this information, for those interested persons, in order to comply with requirements under the GP contract. However, we do not believe that publishing our earnings is either appropriate or relevant to the clinical care of our patients. In support of this, we provide some detailed background to this contract requirement.

Politics in the GP workplace

In September 2014, in preparation for the GP contract for the year 2015/16, negotiators for NHS Employers on behalf of NHS England had only one item on their agenda for discussion in determining the changes in the GP contract. One would think this might be adding some important clinical improvements, like enhancing the care of vulnerable patients, or perhaps some new targets for reducing serious infections, or possibly incentives to improve the care of those suffering from cancer, but no, the only new thing they wanted in the GP contract was an entirely political one, and it was that the salaries of GPs be exposed to the public. Therefore, according to our contract, average GP earnings must be published. The reason cited for this move is 'transparency', yet we are not seeing similar transparency being applied to every NHS worker or even other 'public servants' (although paid from the public purse and widely considered to be public servants, GPs are actually independent contractors to the NHS).

Consequences of such actions

Such a single-minded determination to do this clearly betrays the contempt in which GPs are held by those in power. This directive would have only come directly from the government; a government which has been intent (along with previous governments) on destroying the very fabric of General Practice and with it, the rest of the NHS. Unintended (or some would say intended) consequences of publishing income include, making it more difficult for practices to recruit doctors, continuing the downward pressure on salaries, widening inequalities between practices, localities and regions, further increasing the risks to the very business of General Practice and paving the way for an invasion of profiteering private enterprise (initial forays into this area by some such providers have already been proven to provide a poorer quality service, and contracts are often terminated early, leading to patients suddenly being without a GP).

General Practice At Risk

The single greatest asset of any workforce is actually its workers, and particularly more so with the NHS, which largely runs only because of the goodwill of its doctors, nurses and other hardworking staff. However, as aptly illustrated by its recent approach with the junior doctors, the way the government is treating its crucial staff reveals its true intentions towards the NHS.

As of March 2016, almost 300 GP surgeries in England face closure because of financial pressures and nearly half have doctors planning to leave the NHS; in total more than 900 GP practices are in a weak financial position. This is about 1 in 10 of all practices. There is therefore a very real risk that many thousands of patients will be left without a local GP surgery that can deliver the care that they need.

Take Action!

If you are at all concerned about the future of the NHS, and especially General Practice, widely considered to be the cornerstone of the NHS, you can write to your local MP or to the Health Secretary. As GPs we have already repeatedly made our feelings known, in last ditch attempts to get the message across to politicians and the public about what is happening to General Practice. As patients, but also as voters, you may wish to do the same. You can find details of your local MP at www.theyworkforyou.com 

GP Earnings

Some Perspective and actual Transparency

Publicly available figures show that Freshwell Health Centre receives about £143 of funding to care for one of our patients for an entire year. For this, any patient can see us as many times as they need, including face to face, telephone or home visit encounters. Our patients see us, on average, about six times a year, with some vulnerable patients each seeing us 15 or more times a year.

From this £143 figure, as with other GP practices, we pay our heating, lighting, cleaning and maintenance, staff wages, training, insurance, buy all our consumables (couch rolls, gloves, envelopes etc) and anything else that is required for providing care and running a practice. What is then left over is shared between the partners who own the business.

£143 per year equates to just 56½p funding per patient per working day, or £2.75 per week

Also bear in mind that with this level of funding (which realistically would only provide for two consultations in a year if paid at normal market rates), GPs do not aim to simply provide basic low rate care. The vast majority of GPs provide not only high quality care and but also, more importantly, safe care, whilst also working towards difficult and often irrational government targets; all of this is often at immense personal cost to themselves and their families. Regardless of what you might read in the papers and what you might hear from the mouths of politicians, GPs are dedicated professionals who have an innate sense of striving to do their best to help people.

Comparing the annual costs of everyday items:

  • £143 is the cost of medical care for you for one whole year
  • £150 is the price of the cheapest 4G phone contract
  • £170 is a trip to the cinema every fortnight
  • £179 is how much a monthly haircut would cost
  • £209 is an average bottle of wine every two weeks
  • £240 is the cost of a basic Sky TV package
  • £339 is the average cost to insure your dog

Disclaimer regarding Published Figures 

NHS England requires that the net earnings of doctors engaged in the practice is publicised, and the required disclosure is shown below. However it should be noted that the prescribed method for calculating earnings is potentially misleading because it takes no account of how much time doctors spend working in the practice, and should not be used to form any judgement about GP earnings, nor to make any comparison with any other practice‡.

The average pay for GPs working in The Freshford Practice (at Freshwell Health Centre) in the last financial year was £59,435 before tax and national insurance.  This is for one full-time GP and six part-time GPs who worked in the Practice for more than 6 months.

‡ Statement as recommended by AISMA (Association of Independent Specialist Medical Accountants)

A full time GP here can work in excess of 52 hours a week

A 'part time' GP here can work in excess of 39 hours a week 

So now you know, but more crucially, you now know why...

Acknowledgements to Ivy Grove, West End and St James Surgeries  

 
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