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National Guidance on Face Masks in Primary Care - April 2023

Updated IP&C guidance 5 April 2022

Managing healthcare staff with symptoms of a respiratory infection or a positive COVID-19 test result 1 April 22

From 1 April, in line with UKHSA advice, the following updated arrangements for staff and patient testing will apply.  

Living with COVID-19 – testing update

Patient facing staff should continue to test twice weekly when asymptomatic. LAMP testing (saliva tests) will no longer be available, but LFD tests for patient facing staff will continue to be available through the portal.

All symptomatic staff should test using LFDs and continue to follow the current return to work guidance. In a change to testing policy, staff who are household contacts of a positive COVID-19 case will no longer be required to have a PCR test in order to return to work. Symptomatic staff can continue to access LFDs via the portal.

Staff who are household contacts of a positive COVID-19 case will now be able to continue to work as normal if they remain asymptomatic and continue to test twice weekly. They will no longer be required to have a PCR test in order to return to work.

Although the general public will not be offered COVID-19 tests routinely if symptomatic, there may be some instances where a clinician will want to offer a COVID-19 test as part of a diagnostic pathway to support clinical decisions. In these cases, patients should be directed to the website to order their tests, where they will be asked to confirm that their clinician has requested this. 30 March 2022

There are no immediate changes to infection prevention control (IPC) requirements. This includes the requirement for staff, patients and visitors to wear a mask/face covering in healthcare settings. The consistent application of IPC measures, alongside the roll out of the vaccine programme and staff and patient testing, remains the most effective defence against the entry and spread of COVID-19 in healthcare settings. Communications resource are available to help reinforce this message within primary care settings. 24 February 2022

Healthcare staff who have tested positive for COVID-19 should not attend work until they have had two negative LFD test results taken 24 hours apart. The first test should not be taken before day 5 after their initial positive test. UKHSA will be updating the guidance for staff and patients exposed to COVID-19 and this will be posted on the UKHSA guidance pages . 24 February 2022

Information on the Government’s additional COVID-19 advice for people whose immune system means they are at higher risk - 4 January 2022

RCGP and BMA prioritisation guidance to manage workload - 21 December 2021

RCGP Guidance on masks and face coverings in primary care

NHS COVID passes - 17 December 2021

It is now mandatory for adults (over 18 years old) to demonstrate their COVID-19 status before entering certain venues and events. This means demonstrating that they have received a full course of an approved vaccine, have completed a negative PCR or lateral flow test within the past 48 hours, or are exempt from both testing and vaccination. The NHS COVID Pass can be used to demonstrate COVID-19 status at these venues.

Children aged 12-15 year old who have had a full course of COVID-19 vaccination are eligible for an NHS COVID Pass letter for travel, which includes an internationally recognised 2D barcode. The letter service can be accessed by calling 119 or via

The medical exemptions service will continue to run, and individuals will still be able to request an application form by calling the NHS COVID Pass Service on 119 and then sending this onto a clinician for review. However, to ensure a national effort to maximise booster rollout, the timeframe for processing a medical exemption request will be at the professional discretion of the practice. DHSC will update all the relevant public guidance to reflect this change.

NHSE & I have made available posters, leaflets and digital campaign materials on how to access GP services to help manage expectations at this incredibly busy time. 15 December 2021

Crib sheet for practices - COVID-19 Vaccination programme 13 December 2021

COVID-19: management of staff and exposed patients or residents in health and social care settings - GOV.UK ( - 30 November 2021

The changes are in regard to Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2.

“Staff members notified that they are a contact of a COVID-19 case are not required to self-isolate if they are fully vaccinated, unless they are identified as a close contact of a suspected or confirmed case of the Omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2. They should inform their line manager or employer immediately if they are required to work in the 10 days following their last contact with a COVID-19 case.”

Somerset Covid Vaccination Programme - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) - November 2021

Reporting a Communicable Disease Outbreak in Primary Care - COVID-19 - NHS SW Health Outbreak Framework and IIMARCH reporting template - 14 July 2021

Updated PHE guidance on NHS staff and student self-isolation and return to work following COVID-19 contact - 12 August 2021

COVID-19: management of staff and exposed patients or residents in health and social care settings - 12 August 2021

Exemption from Isolation Guidance 

New government guidance - frontline health and care staff can work rather than self-isolate

The government announced new guidance in July - to exclude double-vaccinated frontline NHS and social care staff from the requirement to isolate, (under exceptional circumstances), so they can continue to work.

This is not intended as a business continuity measure, but rather, the guidance is aimed at supporting providers to continue to provide service for clients, to ensure that patient/residents safety is protected, where the immediate risks to service users far outweigh the risks of COVID.

This measure is being introduced to alleviate pressure on NHS and social care services and will be contingent on staff members only working after having a negative PCR test and daily negative lateral flow tests.

The Government announced that the decision to ‘exclude from isolation’ would need to be supported by the relevant Director of Public Health/Director of Infection Prevention and Control. The authorisation referred to in the Guidance is to confirm that the organisation has complied with the principles outlined in the Exemption from self-isolation document. It is not taking legal accountability for the decision made, which continues to rest with the originating provider organisation.

Attached are standard operating procedure, a risk assessment (which must be completed in all cases) and flow-chart which outlines the agreed system-wide process. Completed risk forms should be sent to

Updated Enhanced Service Specification - COVID-19 vaccination programme 4 June 2021 - Updated Covid-19 vaccination enhanced service specification NHS England (NHSE) has updated the enhanced service specification to include a three month maximum period within which payment claims must be made, require Primary Care Network (PCN) groupings to use a single point of care system for entering new vaccination events in order to minimise the risk of duplicate payments, and permit the administration and payment claim of a single dose vaccine once authorised.

Staff isolation: approach following updated government guidance 

COVID-19 Wave 1 Information to support you to stand up your vaccination service

e-LFH training for Vaccinators

COVID Vaccination - IT systems training

Enhanced Service Vaccination Collaboration Agreement  and the LMC precis of the collaborative agreement - 04.12.20 & Updated 12.12.20

How to book vaccination appointments for PCN delivery on EMIS

Pfizer covid vaccine dose draw up

Covid-19 newsletter with thanks to Wessex LMC 09.12.20 

BMA & RCGP - COVID-19 Workload Prioritisation Unified Guidance 11 January 2021

COVID-19 Vaccination in Older Adult Care Homes  the next stage 13 January 2021

NPA COVID-19: Pfizer/BioNTech, Oxford/AstraZeneca and Moderna vaccines characteristics comparison chart

Process for the payment of Item of Service fees and Care Home Supplement payments to PCN groupings 15 January 2021

NHS - Everything you wanted to know about vaccine allocations 11 February 2021

Information on an additional cohort of patients identified at increased risk from COVID 19, and the implications for their vaccination, support and advice 15 February 2021 15 February 2021 

Somerset CCG - "You cannot choose which COVID-19 vaccine you receive" this is a link o the NHS COVID-19 vaccine information, there is also a COVID-19 vaccine graphic which you are free to use on your website and/or reception screens.  

COVID Oximetry@Home - Weekend and BH Monitoring form and email contact - 17.02.2021

Temporary Practice Closure Application FormJanuary 2021

NHS Somerset - COVID-19 Vaccinations & Resources in Easy Read/Accessible formats 

Pulse Oximeter - NHS leaflet - Easy Read instructions for patients

COVID-19 Vaccine  - Adverse Events: How to Report Poster

set of SNOMED CT codes to support the management of long term effects of COVID-19 are now available on GP systems.  

Link to PCN Dashboard information

Government extends free COVID-19 PPE scheme until the end of March 2022 -  8 April 2021

The Government is extending the provision of free COVID-19 PPE to health and social care providers until the end of March 2022. Following the previous announcement of free PPE provision until the end of June 2021, the scheme will now be extended to the end of March 2022 as the expectation of clinical experts is that usage will remain high throughout the next financial year.

This will ensure that General Practice, dentists, community pharmacy and opticians can continue to access rigorously tested and high-quality PPE. Providers should continue to access COVID-19 PPE via their current distribution channels.

DOH poster displaying information about COVID-19 restricitions in England from 12 April 2021

Supporting COVID - 19 vaccine during Ramadan

Staying COVID-19 secure poster

GOV.UK - Demonstrating your COVID-19 vaccination status when travelling abroad 11 May 2021

From 17 May, COVID-19 vaccination status will be available for people living in England, for international travel, via the NHS App or by calling 119 to request a letter copy.  There are communications materials available for GP practices to use on their websites and voicemail.  There is also information on how to use the NHS app.  

FAQs for COVID -19 Data Quality Issues - If your issue is not covered by the advice and FAQs on that site, then contact the Vaccines Support Desk on 0300 200 1000 who will be able to route your issue to the Vaccination Data Quality Support team (Vaccine DQ team) if they are the best team to help. You can also email the Vaccine DQ team direct at

Useful information for GP Practices re: digital access to health services  - The Digital Outreach Team have collated this information that you may find useful regarding patient access to digital healthcare services, including common issues and fixes and some information regarding Covid vaccs status on the NHS App that could be used on your practice website.  June 2021





Business Continuity Plans


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Deployment of port security software - Removable Devices

Disclosing patient information without consent

Enhanced Services Local and National 2021/22


Future of General Practice

Infection Control guidance

National Bereavement Care Pathway

NEW Cauda Equina Syndrome (CES) Pathway ‘Goes Live’ at 1100 hours on Wednesday 4th August 2021

NHSEI rescue package for General Practice

Non medical Referrers

Occupational Health Resources and Guidance

ORCHA - Organisation for the Review of Care and Health Applications

Practice and Primary Care Network (PCN) income ready reckoner for 2023/24

Records Management

The National standards of healthcare cleanliness 2021

Think Measles!