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Somerset LMC Weekly Update Friday 1st October 2021

Date sent: Friday 1 October 2021

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

Media Intrusion: Advice from Richard Vautrey. We are aware that with the intense national media vilification of General Practice some journalists are approaching local practices directly for comment. There is no obligation to respond to the media. If practices would like guidance about a specific situation they can reach the BMA media team at Media Office MediaOffice@bma.org.uk We are also concerned that some publications will send photographers to practices looking for photos designed to support their narrative of primary care being hard to access. The Editor’s Code of Conduct which guides the practice of press organisations in the UK says that journalists should identify themselves when asked to do so and that no journalists should operate on healthcare property without permission, this applies to photographers as well. So if practice staff see a possible photographer who is not welcome then the best advice is to ask them to identify themselves and then ask them to leave.

Support for GPs: We were pleased that practices had some recognition from the Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab in answer to a question by Robert Largan, MP for High Peak. Mr Largan said GPs had done a brilliant job and are working long hours in challenging circumstance, but many constituents had raised concerns about seeing their GP face-to-face.  Mr Raab paid tribute to GPs by saying “I join him in thanking GPs for the heroic job they have done in seeing us through the pandemic” and also said appointments have returned to pre-pandemic levels. 

Somerset MPs: We reported a few weeks ago about our contacting the five Somerset MPs about the current situation in general practice. Readers will be pleased to hear that David Warburton (Somerton & Frome) and James Heappey (Wells) have responded sympathetically and that practice visits are being arranged via your LMC committee representatives. We hope that the other three will soon respond equally positively.

C The Signs Delayed to 6th October: The CCG’s Tanisha Greenwood apologises for the inconvenience for the revised ‘go live’ date but is making and testing last minute changes to some of the 2WW pathways.

Axillary Ultrasound Requests: We have been asked to remind colleagues again that this test using Ordercomms is always rejected by Diagnostic Imaging. These studies are – for ALL patients - the province of the Breast department. The LMC has reminded the Trust that it seems sensible to remove the test from the drop-down picking list or add a pop-up to say refer to the Breast dept. Requests entered in free text won’t be processed either.

Colorectal Suspected Cancer Hub Pilot: To make sure that Lower GI 2WW referrals that require a qFIT have the results available a new Colorectal Suspected Cancer Hub is to be piloted from 11th October 2021. SFT has secured funding as part of SWAG Cancer Alliance 2021 Innovation Funding. The aim is to create a single point of contact for GPs for all 2WW Lower GI referrals. GPs will not have to give the patient the qFIT form and test kit before to making a 2WW Lower GI referral but use the new form on C The Signs. GPs will still need to examine the patient (including a digital rectal examination) and request bloods, as usual before the referral to the Hub via eRS. More details here.

Talking Therapies: A  YouTube video produced with Dr Sarah Temple and SFT Talking Therapies with the intention to normalise conversations about mental health and (hopefully) enable more parents to access the emotional support they need. Vickie is a Somerset parent who accessed emotional support through Talking Therapies. All permissions have been managed and the clip can be promoted in any way by any of you who would like to use it including on social media or in GP surgeries.

Community Pharmacy Discharge Medicines Service (DMS): Launched in Somerset DMS is a new Essential service in the Community Pharmacy Contractual Framework. The aim is to help patients get the maximum benefits from new medicines or changes to their existing medicines made in hospital by allowing them to question pharmacists. Thus concerns are identified earlier. This is part of the ‘Pharmacy First’ approach to ease pressures general practice. Discharging hospitals refer patients, who would benefit from extra guidance, to their community pharmacy. Pilots elsewhere have demonstrated that patients who see their a pharmacist after they have been in hospital are less likely to be readmitted. The roll out of the service in Somerset started in July with YDH: by the end of August there had been over 250 referrals.

Pension Deductions by PCSE: GPC writes we are aware that around 2,000 practices did not have pension deductions taken for one or more GPs from June through August. PCSE inform us that the majority will have the deductions in total taken from payments to practices during this month’s payment runs. The deductions will be taken from the first payment processed by PCSE during the month, be that global sum or any other payment. Where the deduction total is greater than this payment the balance will be taken from the next payment during this month. PCSE has communicated this to affected practices but we are keen that this is understood. They have advised us that practices will also receive a separate statement with details of the pensions deductions being taken and that it will be important that practices compare both statements to ensure they have the full view of payments in vs the deductions.

Somerset New To Practice General Practice Fellowship Programme for Newly Qualified GPs: Are you or do you know a GP that has qualified since May 2021 and is/will be working in Somerset? If so, this funded fellowship programme may be of interest. It is a financially incentivised 2 year programme designed to provide personalised support to newly qualified GPs to help gain confidence and to develop enjoyable, fulfilling and sustainable careers in general practice. Nearly all of our GPs have joined, and this year we have 26 fellows. Our next cohort will start in April 2022. See programme here. Any questions or to apply, please contact Dr Catherine Ievers catherine.ievers1@nhs.net

Top Tips...

Can be found here . New items this week are:
- Covid 19 booster codes
- Seasonal flu SNOMED codes for CQRS and DES

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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