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Somerset LMC Weekly Update Friday 20th November 2020

Date sent: Friday 20 November 2020

Sent to all Somerset GPs and Practice Managers          This and previous updates are available here

MARs charts a message from LMC chairman Dr Karen Sylvester: Dear Colleagues, I managed this week to get both Jill’s and Barry’s blood pressure up by mentioning MAR charts and therefore I thought a reminder in the update would be welcomed.
We appreciate the hard work of our community nursing especially during these very difficult times. However the LMC had negotiated some time ago MAR charts are NOT required with the exception for palliative care drugs and insulin. If asked please direct your nursing colleagues back to their manager.

Update on COVID swab testing in general practice: Last week, NHS Test and Trace rolled out a new service making COVID swab testing capability available to all general practices in England on a voluntary, opt in basis. This has been positively received with high levels of interest – over 1,700 practices have registered to use the service with over 68,000 test kits ordered. All practices should have received a Unique Organisation Number (UON) via email that enables them to register to use the service. The email address originates from ‘organisation.coronavirus.testing@notifications.service.gov.uk’. If you have found that you have not received it, please first check your emails including spam folders. If are still unable to identify it, please call the NHS Primary Care Bulletin helpdesk on 119 and select 1 for England and they will be able to assist you.
Guidance – COVID-19 testing in general practice.

Flu Vaccination Campaign Extended at last: The following announcement came from NHSEI at midnight. “Adults over the age of 50 will be able to get their free flu vaccine from 1 December in the next phase of this year’s expanded flu vaccination programme...Flu vaccine uptake is higher in all vulnerable groups except pregnant women compared to this time last year. Provisional data published by PHE on Thursday 20 November suggests [uptake of] 72.9% of those aged 65 and over, 45.0% of 2 year olds and 46.8% of 3 year olds...GPs, Trusts and Pharmacists can order additional stock to vaccinate this new group from the centrally secured government supply of over 7 million vaccines...There is enough flu vaccine supply to vaccinate 30m people throughout this year’s flu season in England.”

Updated Directed Enhanced Service Specification for flu: Following the announcement and the recent publication of guidance, an updated DES Specification for the seasonal flu and pneumococcal vaccination programme 2020/21 has been published to reflect practices now being able to access central flu vaccines supplies.

Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV) Medication delivery: Our LPC colleagues have shared the process for deliveries for practices information:

For emergencies the Pharmacist may contact the helpline for urgent same day deliveries if the Pharmacist has no capacity.
If a Pharmacy has to close at short notice due to an outbreak and the supporting network cannot help with the deliveries then the Pharmacist or other staff may contact the Coronavirus helpline.
The LPC encourages Pharmacies to let their GP colleagues know of procedures so they can assist their patients effectively if they get calls to help.

PPE in General Practice: With growing staff shortages and even CV19 outbreaks in Somerset practices we have been asked to remind everyone that proper use of PPE when seeing patients and distancing at work among staff can help reduce the risk. In the summer one might expect only a fraction of a percentage point of people to be infected but now the rate, at time of writing, is about 140/100,000.

Parental leave webinar and workshop: GPC have published guidance for GPs on parental leave and will be hosting a webinar and workshop for more in depth guidance on these issues:

If you would like to submit questions in advance to be covered at either session, please contact Christopher Scott via cscott@bma.org.uk

Locums getting a nasty surprise: Our sessional GP representative has had several reports of locums arriving at work only then to discover that they're on call - putting them into a difficult position if they have e.g. childcare deadlines. It looks like certain practices are struggling for locums. If a change in agreed role is needed this needs to be discussed with the clinician as early as possible. We also know that some agencies (not including the Taunton GP Locum Agency) may be at fault for agreeing a work plan with a practice but not telling the GP they engage to do the work. We therefore advise practices take special care to make sure both parties know what has actually been agreed.

Top Tips...

Can be found here. New item this week is:

And Finally...

You couldn't make it up: From a letter from Herts LMC to NHSE about one of its practices. “NHS Digital recently wrote to over 6,000 patients (a third of the practice list) telling them they are on the shielded [CEV] list and what precautions they should be taking. The majority of these patients (over 5,000) had been incorrectly identified by NHSD because it erroneously linked a local practice code to high risk patients. The practice had used a code (XalkE (Read) 443999002 (SNOMED) "potential infectious contact") to indicate that the clinician seeing the patient F2F had worn PPE. This was a local decision made early on in the pandemic, in the absence of any other advice or guidance, to help them manage their clinical system. NHSD mapped this code to a cluster relating to patients deemed at high risk of complications from CV19, even though there is nothing in the code that suggests this to be the case.”

Have you checked your Junk folder recently?: It would appear that since a recent NHS mail update many of our e mails and others are ending up in the Junk folder, so please do check regularly, if in fact you get to read this message!

 

Kind Regards

 

Jill

Jill Hellens

Executive Director
Somerset LMC
Crown Medical Centre, Venture Way, Taunton, TA2 8QY

Tel: (01823) 331 428            
Fax: (01823) 338 561     

www.somersetlmc.co.uk
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