Northumberland GPs call on public to ‘be kind’ at busy time for NHS services

Northumberland GP surgeries are asking the public to ‘be kind’, do their bit and use services wisely this Christmas.

Wednesday, 23rd December 2020, 6:00 am

NHS Northumberland Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is reminding people that the festive period is always an incredibly busy time for NHS services.

With the added pressure of delivering the Covid-19 vaccination this year, there is an even bigger increase in demand.

GPs are calling on the public to use services wisely and where possible go to 111.nhs.uk before making contact with their GP.

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Dr Lily Lamb, receptionist Michael Stamford-Bewlay and Dr Robin Hudson.

Dr Lily Lamb, a Ponteland GP, said: “Some surgeries are dealing with reduced staffing due to social distancing and self-isolation.

"We know how frustrating this can be for our patients but we are doing our very best to care for you and get you the help you need.

"It’s been a really tough year for everyone, especially NHS staff who have been working tirelessly under new and unforeseen pressures.

“It’s fantastic news that we now have a vaccine. But it is going to be a huge amount of work to roll it out across the county and we will be administering this as well as assessing patients as part of our normal working day.”

Since the resumption of routine services, some members of the public have become frustrated and unhappy with long waits to get in touch via phone.

Dr Lamb continued: “We’ve been all hands on deck in general practice since the beginning of the pandemic. We have continued to look after our patients with long term conditions and to care for those with new and ongoing medical issues. We have also provided care for many patients with Covid-19 and for those suffering from ‘long Covid’.

“A significant part of our work during the pandemic has been supporting those who are isolated, suffering from mental health problems and the social and financial consequences of Covid-19.

“The public have been so patient and understanding – and the clap for carers was a real boost to our morale. I just hope this support can continue even though the clapping has stopped. We are human too and we are all in this together.

"We need to remember to be kind and help each other through this difficult time.”

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