Latest News

British Society for Immunology
16th May

You can practice your religion and have your vaccinations

For more information on having your vaccinations and practicing religion please visit:

https://www.immunology.org/

4th May

Vaccination Data Resolution Service (VDRS)

What can the VDRS help with?

The VDRS can currently assist with:

  • Missing or incorrect vaccination records for people registered with a GP practice in England and vaccinated in England, Scotland or Wales.

What can the VDRS not help with?

The VDRS team is working on solutions to other issues people might experience with their vaccine records.

For now, some examples of cases in which the service cannot currently help include:

  • Cases where the person’s name or address is recorded incorrectly
  • Vaccinations given outside of England, Scotland or Wales
  • Cases of non-MHRA-approved vaccines (the service cannot help with vaccines other than Oxford/AstraZeneca (Vaxzevria), Pfizer (Comirnaty), Moderna (Spikevax), and Janssen)
  • People who cannot evidence when and where they received their vaccination(s)
  • Vaccine trial participants.

How can individuals access VDRS?

  • Guidance on how individuals can access VDRS can be found via this link: https://www.nhs.uk/contact-us/vaccine-record-help/.
  • The VDRS can also be contacted by calling 119, selecting option 1 (‘England’) and then option 4 (‘To report an issue with your vaccination record’).
  • The call agents will take some details from the individual and make an electronic referral into the VDRS service.
  • The VDRS team will aim to contact the individual within 21 days.
  • The number they will call the individual from is 01869 817119 (this is not a number that individuals can call into).
  • They will make three attempts to contact the individual.
  • If the VDRS team are unsuccessful in contacting the individual, they will need to call 119 and make a new referral.
  • The individual’s previous call will be closed after the three attempts to contact them.

How long will it take the VDRS to contact individuals?

The VDRS team aims to contact individuals within 21 days of referral.

How do citizens make a complaint about the VDRS

Complaints about the VDRS should be directed to the NHS England Complaints team at england.contactus@nhs.net or by post to:
NHS England
PO Box 16738
Redditch
B97 9PT

What should individuals do if their vaccination record is correct and still can’t access their NHS COVID Pass?

If an individual’s vaccination record is correct but they still cannot access their NHS COVID Pass, they should call 119 and choose the NHS COVID Pass option to access support.

What should individuals do if they’re having problems with accessing the NHS App?

If an individual is having a problem specifically with the NHS App, as opposed to a vaccination data record problem, please contact the NHS App team at https://www.nhs.uk/contact-us/nhs-app-contact-us/.

29th Apr

Inhaler Changes

To help with the NHS sustainability drive, we will be making some changes to inhalers for some patients with lung conditions.

Please read our letter to patients on inhalers for more information.

Telegraph Logo
29th Apr

FAQ: COVID Pass and Holidays

Could moving house ruin my holiday?

We have to fill in far fewer forms to go on holiday today than we did six months ago, with many countries having relaxed their Covid testing requirements. But there is one loophole that could throw your next holiday into disarray, particularly if you have just moved home: the NHS Covid Pass is deactivated for a short time when you register with a new doctor. But why? Here is everything you need to know about the anomaly, with tips on how to avoid it affecting your travels.

Why has my Covid Pass been deactivated?

The Covid Pass is rendered inactive when you transfer your details from one GP surgery to another.

How long does it usually take to reactivate?

The NHS app says it can take up to 24 hours (although identification can be approved within an hour). An NHS Digital spokesman told The Telegraph: “Most identity checks are completed within a couple of hours. However, sometimes additional checks may be required or demand may mean that identity checks take a few days or more to be completed. People are encouraged to register ahead of booking international travel.”

Are there any other ways to reactivate the Covid Pass?

If your GP surgery is open, you can ask for your account details, the surgery’s ODS code (ie, organisation code or practice ID) and linkage key (pass phrase). Enter these details on the NHS app as an alternative to sending photographic identification and this will begin the process of reactivating your account.

Why does the NHS disable your Covid Pass when you move house?

A spokesman for NHS Digital confirmed that this will happen in some but not all cases. He said: “In most cases, this should not be an issue. For a small number of people who change GP practice, there may be a short delay in being able to see their NHS Covid Pass while the new GP practice validates their registration and updates access settings.”

What happens if my Covid Pass doesn’t reactivate in time for me to board my flight?

If you have previously downloaded your pass and it is still valid (it expires one month after download, to prevent fraud) then you will be able to use this PDF document as proof of vaccination. Failing that, your only option to guarantee boarding your flight (if applicable to your destination) would be to take a confirmatory Covid test within an appropriate time frame before travel. These rapid tests are typically available at airports, but come at a price.

Do all destinations require proof of vaccination?

Many of the UK’s favourite holiday destinations, including Greece, Spain, France and the United States, require proof of vaccination. Failing that, many countries will accept proof of a negative Covid-19 test in lieu of a vaccine certificate. But there are many that have scrapped all Covid-19 requirements, including Denmark, Iceland and the Czech Republic.

Quality Hallmark Award
27th Apr

Portsdown Group Practice awarded GSF Quality Hallmark Award

Portsdown Group Practice has been awarded a national Gold Standards Framework (GSF) Quality Hallmark Award for its delivery of end of life care during the pandemic.

The Award will be given as part of the Gold Standards Framework (GSF) Virtual Awards on 5th May, which recognises health and social care providers delivering quality care in the final year of life.

Portsdown Group Practice is one of 42 care homes, primary care, domiciliary care agency and hospitals which will receive the prestigious GSF quality hallmark across the country during the virtual ceremony.

The Gold Standards Framework Centre, provides expert training for frontline staff in health and social care, to enable a ‘gold standard’ of care for people nearing end of life.

Before the pandemic hit, GSF provided face-to-face workshops, but have successfully adapted and moved online to adhere to COVID-19 regulations. The training has been a huge success, and has supported both families and patients to discuss end of life care planning and what matters to them at the end of life.

Portsdown Group had this to say about winning the award "We are immensely proud to have achieved this award, especially during such a busy time for the NHS. At Portsdown, we strive for excellence, and we are so grateful that we have been recognised for this, as providing exemplary care to patients in the last years of their life is such an important part of providing the best healthcare possible"

Julie Armstrong-Wilson, Lead Nurse for GSF said: “Congratulations to all 12 organisations that have successfully achieved accreditation and reaccreditation. The last two years have posed some incredible challenges to the health and social care workforce, so we are very proud of all of our successful applicants that took the time to submit their portfolios of evidence. We have also seen another 30 organisations demonstrate the sustainability of GSF and successfully receive the GSF Platinum Award (organisations that have been accredited more than once). The GSF team are so very proud of all our Award Winners, as there has never been a more important time to ensure we deliver quality end of life care, well done to you all!”

To find out more about the Gold Standards Framework, visit https://www.goldstandardsframework.org.uk/

8th Apr

GP Practices in Portsmouth are under extreme pressure

Local NHS services are currently experiencing some of the most severe pressures in its history.

GP practices in Portsmouth have been facing rising demand for services, alongside escalating COVID-19 case numbers (a 65% increase) with cases in Hampshire higher than the rest of the UK. This rise in cases also means increased staff absences because of sickness, isolation requirements, or needing to care for unwell children.

This week, South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SCAS) and Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust (PHU) declared critical incidents, due to significant and sustained demand for services.

We are actively supporting our NHS colleagues in urgent and emergency care during these critical incidents and partners across Portsmouth and South East Hampshire continue to work together to help to alleviate some of these pressures.

However, we know through modelling that demand and prevalence of COVID is likely to increase over the coming weeks, with a peak of COVID-19 cases and NHS system pressures expected over the Easter period.

Our practice team has been working tirelessly throughout the pandemic and, like all practices in Portsmouth, we have been at the forefront of the NHS response, delivering the hugely successful COVID-19 vaccination roll-out while maintaining day to day medical care for our patients.

We are all working longer and harder than ever before to provide the very best care we can, under intense pressure.

To make sure people can get access to care safely and quickly, we aim to deliver a range of different ways of having an appointment to provide you with more choice and more convenience. These include phone consultations, online consultations or video consultations.

Face-to-face appointments are still available if you need them, however we will be prioritising urgent appointments over the coming weeks to ensure access to care is the best it can be.

We ask for your continued understanding and support as we strive to face these pressures. This may mean that you have to wait longer for a less urgent appointment or experience some delays. We thank you for being patient and kind to our staff if you need to wait longer to have your enquiry dealt with.

Please continue to limit the spread of COVID-19, the pandemic hasn't gone away and we need your help to manage it. If you can, please take a COVID-19 test before coming into the surgery to limit the spread and keep our staff safe and able to work.

Social Prescribing Day
10th Mar

Social Prescribing Day 10th March

Today marks Social Prescribing Day 2022.  You may be asking what does this mean for me?

 

Moreover, what can social prescribing do for you?

 

At Portsdown Group Practice we have a skilled set of social prescribers that work within all of our 6 practices. We offer support beyond the consultation room, looking further than your treatment plans and looking at all the parts that make you unique and focus on what matters to you.

 

As social prescribers, our aim to work holistically with you to reach positive goals and aid better wellbeing and overall health. We will work to empower all individuals focusing on the practical and emotional issues that people may face.

 

We offer a safe space to help unpick the parts that feel tricky and support you on your journey. We offer advice, support, guidance and work with community-based projects to look at fostering connections with you in your local area.  This support is always personalised to what works for you and you are in control every step of the way.

 

We are currently able to give advice, support, information and signposting for one or more of the below issues:

 

  • Social isolation/loneliness
  • Housing issues
  • Debt/finance issues/benefits/legal issues
  • Domestic abuse or relationship issues
  • Basic needs such as accessing food
  • Employment/training/education
  • Elderly or extremely vulnerable
  • Children and families support (education, behavioural issues, healthy weight, children who have disabilities)
  • Emotional wellbeing support
  • Substance misuse issues
  • Finding life hard to manage day to day
  • Unsure where to go
  • Carers
  • Veterans

 

Interested in seeing what we can offer for you?

Please speak to any member of our team at surgery to show your interest and a member of our team will be in contact.

11th Feb

Child Imms - Measles warning for children as measles vaccination rate falls in the UK.

The BBC report that the number of children being vaccinated against measles is at it's lowest for 10 years.

At Portsdown, we have a dedicated child imms team that works to ensure that all children are offered their routine childhood immunisations. If you are a parent and are worried or concerned about vaccinating your child, please get in touch as we can arrange for you to speak with one of our nurses that specialise in childhood immunisations.

Measles can be a life threatening condition which can result in death for some children. Now that vaccination uptake is dropping across the UK, the risk of catching measles is increasing as well as the risk of infecting someone else.

Please call us on 02392 009191 if you would like to chat about child imms or to check your childs immunisation status.

To read the full BBC article, please click here.

9th Feb

Structured Medication Reviews - Imperium Healthcare

Over the coming weeks we are working with the pharmacist team at Imperium Healthcare, contacting our patients and booking them in for a Structured Medication Review.

If you are contacted by the team from Imperium Healthcare on behalf of us (Portsdown Group Practice), please rest assured that it is a legitimate phone call and that you are safe to speak with them. They are working with us to help patients receive up to date medication reviews.

The team will be booking in patients with a pharmacist for a telephone review. The pharmacist will review your medication with you to make sure that it is optimised for you.

 

7th Jan

Queen Alexandra Hospital Portsmouth - Major Incident

As a result of a significant water leak affecting large parts of the Queen Alexandra Hospital site in Portsmouth, the major incident declared by Portsmouth Hospital University NHS Trust is ongoing. Patients are being moved safely where appropriate. 

All outpatients appointments scheduled for today have been cancelled. Appointments are being rearranged as soon as possible. Patients affected are being advised by PHU that they may receive a call from their clinician instead. Virtual outpatient appointments are continuing.

 The maternity department remains open as usual. Ambulances are being diverted where clinically appropriate and unless the patient being transported is experiencing a life-threatening injury or illness. 

The gynaecology assessment unit is still open and dialysis and chemotherapy appointments are continuing as usual.

If you have an appointment at QAH over the coming days, please be aware that there may be some disruption.

Get Boosted Now
17th Dec 2021

COVID19 Booster Invites - Update

As of today we still have booster appointments available. 

If you have received a text from us with a link to book and there are no appointments availabe to book. Please visit the NHS National Booking Service website to book your appointment. You can access the website here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/book-coronavirus-vaccination/ 

We have a number of appointments available to book via the National Booking Service, so make sure to select Kingston Crescent Surgery if you'd like to have your booster with us.

Thank you to all of our patients for helping us by booking your boosers.

13th Dec 2021

COVID19 Boosters

Following the government announcement last night, we will be expanding our booster clinics.

We are doing our best to continue with routine appointments, however, you may  be asked to attend a different site at short notice. We request that patients make their best efforts to help us with this.

We will be reviewing our capacity regularly.

Our Kingston Crescent site will become a dedicated vaccine centre.

Invites 

If you are eligible for a booster we will be inviting predominently via text message. Please ensure we have your mobile number and please book your appointment as soon as you receive an invite. This will help us manage capacity for other eligible patients. We are not offering a walk-in service. Please do not attend without having booked an appointment. 

If you are unable to book via text message (once you've received your invite), please call us on 02392 009191 and select option 5. Please only call once you've been invited as we need to keep our phone lines available for those that have been invited.

13th Dec 2021

COVID19 Booster Invites

If you've received a text message invite from us but cannot book, please keep checking. We are adding more clinics on a daily basis, so if you don't yet see an available appointment, keep checking each day.

Invite links are valid for 7 days. After this we will reinvite you if you've not yet booked.

It's important to book your appointment as soon as you can after being invited. This will help us vaccinate as quickly as possible.

If you had a booster appointment booked in January, we have brought forward your appointment. Patients that have had appointments moved will be contacted today and tomorrow. If you arent sure when your appointment is, please give us a call on 02392 009191.

10th Dec 2021

NHS COVID Pass

The NHS COVID Pass lets you share your coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination records or test COVID-19 status in a secure way.

It allows you to show others the details of your COVID status:

  • when travelling abroad to some countries or territories
  • as a condition of entry at those venues or events that use the service in England

You can get an NHS COVID Pass:

  • digitally through the NHS App or online via NHS.UK
  • as a letter sent to you in the post

You can find out the eligibility requirements on the NHS website.

Getting a digital NHS COVID Pass

Get your NHS COVID Pass letter

Please be aware that this the surgery cannot issue COVID passes.

COVID Pass
29th Nov 2021

COVID19 Boosters - Now visible on the NHS app

The NHS app has now been updated to show the details of COVID19 boosters.

Boosters usually take two to three days to appear within the app.

 

Remembrance Run
12th Nov 2021

Andy and Martin's Remembrance Run

On November 11th and ahead of Remembrance Sunday this coming weekend, two members of the PGP team took part in a fund-raising run.

Andy and Martin have been rasing funds to support the Royal British Legion. 

The run started at our Crookhorn branch and the pair visited all of our surgeries, finally finishing at our Kingston Crescent Surgery to a rapturous applause from staff.

Both of them were presented with medals and a tshirt for completing the run by one of Portsdown's veterans. 

We would like to congratulate Andy and Martin for their efforts.

Please do consider donating to their cause via teh following link: https://mypoppyrun.britishlegion.org.uk/fundraising/MyPoppyRun2021-AndyPearce

poppies
12th Nov 2021

For the Fallen

For the Fallen, Laurence Binyon

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning,

We will remember them.

8th Nov 2021

‘Capping eConsults – what’s the reason and what does it mean?’

As you may well be aware, we have seen a huge increase in eConsults.  We started offering this service in 2018, and despite regular promotion we only saw numbers slowly increase to around 10 per week (most of which were ‘sick note’ requests or administrative queries) in this time.  Towards the end of 2019 we were averaging around 102 eConsults a week and were seeing a real increase in eConsults being used for non-urgent medical queries, which was great and the patient feedback was really positive.

During the COVID pandemic patients understandably used eConsults as a means of remote access to their clinician.  It felt safe, it meant routine issues could be dealt with in a reasonable time, and you, as the patient, did not need to come in to the surgery.  This was in line with government recommendations and preferred by many people whether they were shielding or not.

During the pandemic our average eConsults a week soared.  By the time our first national lockdown ended in July 2020 we were averaging 365 eConsults a week – a 350% increase!

Lockdowns came and went a couple more times, and restrictions remained in place.  Then the nation finally reached ‘Freedom Day’ in July 2021.  During all this time, Primary Care remained open and eConsults continued to increase.  Come ‘Freedom Day’ we were receiving an average of 842 eConsults a week – a further 230% increase on the previous year.

We absolutely recognise the value of eConsult – particularly for those who struggle to be available in our core hours.  Digital access = Digital response, so unless we need more information from you then you will likely receive an email or text contact to update you on the outcome of your eConsult; whether it’s medication sent to your pharmacy, self-care advice, a referral or request to get some tests booked for further investigations.

However, since the Government released their ‘roadmap’ in February 2021, and life has started to go back to ‘normal’ (or at least the ‘new normal’!). Demand for appointments has increased and eConsults continue to grow alongside it.  We (in Primary Care, not just Portsdown) now face unprecedented demand and, as an appointment led service, we simply don’t have the capacity to match it.  We have invested significantly in recruiting additional clinical and administrative staff to deal with eConsults. We have also invested significantly in expanding our wider team so we can put patients in touch with the ‘right colleague’ for their medical issue.  This isn’t always a GP.  However, we recognise that we need to find the right balance between digital access and Phone/Face to Face access – and we know we are not ‘there’ yet.

Whilst we are fans of eConsult, just as many of our patients are, and we recognise it is inevitably part of the future of Primary Care - there are patients it is not appropriate for.  This is for a number of reasons that does not just relate to IT ability and access.  Prior to eConsult, patients would call us to book an appointment and we would care navigate them to the right team member,  offering appointments until we were full, then providing advice and signposting when we were at capacity.  That hasn’t changed.  eConsult, until recently, was a non-exhaustive means of access.  There was no ‘off switch’; meaning patients could continue to submit eConsults regardless of whether we had the capacity to deal with it.  Despite significant investment and some minor adjustments (we were able to ‘switch off’ eConsults out of hours as a few of our local colleagues have also done), the demand just continued to rise.  As a result, our eConsults began to take longer than we wanted to respond to, and our routine access suffered.  The clinical resource to respond to eConsults has to come from somewhere after all.

Now, we have an opportunity to get the balance right.  eConsults can now be capped, which is as it should be for an appointment led service with finite capacity, which is Primary Care.  This means that there will, of course, be times in the week that you will not be able to submit an eConsult because we have hit our daily limit, but it also means we can offer a service that we have the resource and capacity to provide.  As a result, we believe this will have a positive impact to our routine access, and importantly, our response times to eConsult will also improve.  For every session that we have to allocate a clinician to deal with eConsults, we lose anywhere between 10 and 16 routine appointments.  Yes, eConsult is a ‘routine appointment’ of sorts – but feedback from you, our patients, is overwhelming that there are times that you want to be able to book an appointment to talk to someone  - and that is not what eConsult is for.  The recent feedback on eConsults from our patients is that it is a valuable service, but the response times are too long.  We agree - but the only way we can realistically improve this consistently is by capping the access.

We are not looking at limiting the service drastically.  The GP contract states that as a practice, we should be allow patients to submit around 290 eConsults a week.  We know if we offered what we are ‘contractually obliged to’, that would hugely reduce our patient’s access.  We know it is a valued and popular service and we’ve invested in permanent staff to be able to offer more than that.  However, at present we are receiving an average of 930 per week and, quite frankly, something has to give so that we can meet the needs of all our patients.

From next week (8th November) we will have a daily cap that will be in line with our capacity, which is how we run every other aspect of our appointment system.  When we are able to, the cap will increase. The figures are calculated daily , not weekly.  These numbers are in line with trends of eConsults submission data that we have reviewed going back at least 6 months.  We will continue to review this data and we will tweak numbers where we think we need to, in order to have a positive impact.

Please bear with us.  This is one of a number of things that we are implementing, with the overall aim of meeting our patient’s needs, which is at the heart of everything we do.  However, like anything important, it’s worth doing properly and that will inevitably take time.

poppy
5th Nov 2021

Remembrance Day

On Thursday 11th November all of our sites will be conducting a very small service and 2 minutes silence for Remembrance Day.

 Entry to all sites will be restricted between 10:55 and until the two minutes silence has been observed.

 We would like to thankyou for your patience, understanding and support in allowing PGP to participate in this very important occasion.

13th Oct 2021

COVID 19 Symptoms & PCR Test Information

If you are experiencing Covid-19 symptoms, please ensure that you arrange a PCR test even if you are fully vaccinated, a negative lateral flow test is not sufficient. Please note that you should be isolating as per  Government guidelines until a negative result has been received.

8th Oct 2021

AccuRx Record View

We've enabled additional functionality in our ucomputer systems to allow patients to share their medical record with other clinicians (such as hospital specialists). The functionality is called AccuRx Record View.

Record View lets patients easily and securely allow other healthcare professionals involved in their direct care view a summary of their medical record. 

Healthcare professionals get a time-limited and read-only view of the record.

How it works:

  1. GP enables Record View in accuRx desktop - Portsdown Group Practice has done this for our patients.

  2. Authenticated healthcare professionals (such as Hopsital specialists) request to view the record through accuRx Web

  3. Patient gives permission by sharing a unique code sent to them by SMS with the requesting healthcare professional

  4. If the health and care professional enters the code provided by the patient, they receive a 24-hour, read-only, view of the patient’s record

    (N.B. If the patient chooses not to give them the code, the summary view will not be returned).

Portsdown Group Practice patients are not required to do anything to set this up and will always have to give consent (and a code they receive via text message) to the hospital before their records are shared. 

 

17th Sep 2021

COVID Booster Programme

We are pleased to confirm that we will be offering COVID boosters from the 21st September 2021 for eligible patients.

Our clinics will be at Kingston Crescent on a Tuesday and Wednesday evening, and a Friday morning.

There is clear criteria, the most crucial being that patients cannot have their booster until at least 6 months after their second dose.

Therefore, we ask that you DO NOT contact us regarding your booster.  We are able to identify when patients are eligible, and we will contact you to book when the time comes.

Don’t worry – we have a COVID jab waiting for you and we will make sure you are contacted to book rather than risk having to turn you away. 

We will text first if we can, and offer a simple text booking system.  We know this isn’t possible or ideal for all, therefore we will also be making contact by telephone or even post to ensure you know when you can book!

Thank you in advance for your patience.

7th Sep 2021

It's Know Your Numbers Week - Blood pressure checks!

This week is 'Know Your Numbers' week.

We are encouraging all patients to check their blood pressure. We have a blood pressure machine available in reception at all of our sites.

Why not pop in for a quick BP check? 

More information can be found on the BP UK Website.

23rd Aug 2021

Afghanistan - Recent Events

We are conscious that some patients registered at Portsdown Group Practice may be affected by current events in Afghanistan. Portsdown Group Practice is accredited by the Royal College of General Practitioners as one which specialises in the care of military veterans and their families. All the team have been trained in the care of military veterans and their families. If recent events have affected you and you wish to seek help, please come forward.

Expert help is also available from Op COURAGE which is the Veterans Mental Health and Wellbeing Service.

Your GP practice poster
17th Aug 2021

Wessex LMC's Press Release - "Data reveals intense pressure on GP's"

Wessex LMCs have published an article which addresses the pressure GP surgeries are currently under. Below is the article in full:

Data reveals intense pressure on GPs. . .

New data released by the NHS covering Hampshire, Dorset, Wiltshire and part of Somerset has thrown a spotlight on the huge increase in workload faced by GP practices as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The number of appointments offered has risen by an average of 11.8% compared to July two years ago – with Hampshire facing the biggest increase at 16.4%, followed by Wiltshire and part of Somerset combined at 13.2%. The increase was less, but still sizeable, in Dorset at 8.8%. The data includes towns such as Swindon, Fareham and Gosport, Southampton and Portsmouth, as well as the Isle of Wight.

As well as a GP shortage, there has been further pressure caused by population growth, a rise in people seeking mental health support and a backlog of routine treatment. GP surgeries have also had to adapt to new ways of working, introduced new technology for online appointments and given Covid patients oxygen saturation equipment to monitor them remotely. They have also carried out far more flu jabs than ever before.

Wessex Local Medical Committees (LMC), which represents the region’s GPs and practices, is urging patients to be far more understanding of the pressure their local surgeries are under.

Dr Gareth Bryant, Acting Chief Executive of the LMC and a GP in Wiltshire, said: “We are not looking for sympathy, just a better understanding of what we are coping with. Our GP practices have faced unprecedented demand, partly due to delivering the Covid vaccination programme and supporting patients who are ill with coronavirus, and also because they are being affected by the backlog elsewhere in the NHS.

“At the same time, there is a national shortage of GPs and practices are adapting as best they can by recruiting other staff to their teams such a physiotherapists, mental health practitioners and pharmacists. They are trying to get through appointments as best they can but there may be some delays. The Government has promised that more GPs will be recruited but it’s not happening at the speed or the levels we need.

“Our teams have put themselves in the frontline and been exposed to considerable personal risk, sometimes at the expense of their own physical, mental, and families’ health. We have sadly lost colleagues and loved ones to this terrible virus too. Many staff in the NHS are stressed and burnt out.

“We want to encourage people to give their support to their GP practice, whose staff are being kind, patient and responsible, and who are doing everything they can to support their local communities in such difficult circumstances. Our practices in the Wessex area are rated as good by over 83% of the public and even higher in most places – above the national average.”

One of the reasons for the increase in appointments undertaken, even taking into account that over 50,000 people a month fail to attend their appointments, is the rise of email, phone calls and video appointments, up 132.77% from 276,590 in July two years ago, to 643,807 this July. Face-to-face appointments are down 11.43% on average.

LMC Medical Director Dr Andy Purbrick, a GP Partner in Dorset, added: “As independent businesses, GPs have responded extremely well to the challenges of the pandemic and shown themselves to be resilient, adaptable and innovative in the way they protect both patients and staff. They should be praised for the ways in which they have adjusted, including introducing additional technology and communication channels. However, the appointment can often take longer online and result in asking someone to come in to see their GP, duplicating the time involved.

“GPs much prefer to see people face to face, recognising that many ailments cannot be effectively picked up over a phone call or email, and over half of the appointments are being done this way. However, their priority is to keep everyone safe and for many people, online technology or phone call is a more effective way of communicating when it comes to issues that are less serious.”

17th Jun 2021

Portsmouth Jami Mosque Clinic- Part 2!

On Tuesday we went back to Portsmouth Jami Mosque to complete the second vaccinations. We vaccinated around 200 patients. This is a little lower than the first clinic. We urge any patients that have missed their second vaccionation to get in touch with us to arrage their second jab.

The Portsmouth news ran a story about the clinic: You can read the story here.

We'd like to thank Jami Mosque for their hospitality, the HIVE for organising the booking and checking in of the clnics and Portsmouth City Council for helping arrange these clinics.

Finally, thank you to Portsmouth community for coming out and getting your jabs!

If you would like a vaccination and have not yet had one, please get in touch with us.

11th Jun 2021

Book your COVID-19 vaccination NOW if you are in an eligible cohort

Fresh plea for everyone eligible for COVID-19 vaccine to book an appointment

Everyone eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine who has not yet received the jab is urged to do so as soon as possible to protect themselves, loved ones and our communities against the virus.

 Bookings are open to the following groups, in-line with national guidance from the Joint Committee on Vaccinations an Immunisation (JCVI):

  • people aged 23 and over 
  • people who are at high risk from COVID-19 (clinically extremely vulnerable)
  • people who are at moderate risk from COVID-19 (clinically vulnerable)
  • people who live or work in care homes
  • health and social care workers
  • people who receive a Carer's Allowance
  • everyone on the GP Learning Disabilities Register

The first dose of the vaccines offers good levels of protection, but to get maximum protection everyone will need a second dose. Therefore we strongly encourage everyone eligible to take up the offer of a vaccine.

 If you receive an invitation, whether for your first or second dose, please act on it as soon as possible.

 What if I am unable to attend my appointment?

 Please keep your appointment if you have been offered one or are booked into a clinic wherever possible.  If you are unable to attend an appointment please cancel the appointment so that someone else can benefit from it.

 What if I previously declined a COVID-19 vaccination and have changed my mind?

 If you have previously declined a vaccination – the benefits outweigh any potential risks – if you now would like to be vaccinated please contact your practice, book an appointment via the National Booking Service or call 119 between 7am and 11pm, seven days a week.

Text invitations from the national booking service, which do not expire, appear as an alert from ‘NHSvaccine’ and include a web link to the NHS website to reserve an appointment.

You may also receive a text directly from your surgery.

Bringing forward second doses from 12 to eight weeks

 We continue to bring forward appointments for a second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from 12 to eight weeks for anyone in the first nine priority groups who is yet to receive their second vaccination.

 This is in-line with updated national guidance and means people at greater risk of getting seriously ill due to COVID-19 can get maximum protection sooner. People should continue to attend their second dose appointments and nobody needs to contact the NHS.

 The NHS is contacting those who should bring their appointment forward. Eligible people aged under 50 who have not yet made an appointment to receive the vaccine are encouraged to do so as soon as possible, with their second dose at 12 weeks.

 Effectiveness of vaccinations against the Delta variant

 Vaccine effectiveness against the COVID-19 variant first identified in India (now known as Delta) is similar after two doses when compared to the variant first identified in Kent (now known as Alpha), a recent study by Public Health England has shown.

 The first dose of the vaccines offer good levels of protection, but to get maximum protection everyone will need a second dose. If you have been invited to receive a vaccine, please book your appointment as soon as possible.

 Demonstrating COVID-19 vaccination status

 Anyone living in England can now get their COVID-19 vaccination status in digital or paper format. Those who have had two doses of an approved vaccine can show this as proof of their vaccination status when travelling abroad to some countries or territories.

 It is important to note that people are asked not to contact their GP surgery about their COVID-19 vaccination status. GPs cannot provide letters showing a person’s COVID-19 vaccination status.

 How to access COVID-19 vaccination status

 

  • Through the free NHS App
  • By calling 119 and requesting a letter. This must be at least five working days after people have completed their course of the vaccine (two doses). It is expected that the letter will take five working days to be delivered. It will be sent automatically to the address people have registered with their GP. The 119 call handler will not be able to see addresses to check the details and anyone who has recently moved house should ensure they have given their new address to their GP practice before calling 119. More information is available here.

 Help Us Help You

 Unless they have been invited before, people are asked not to contact the NHS to seek a vaccine, they will be contacted by the NHS when it is the right time.

 Everyone who has a booked appointment is asked to attend at exactly the time they are asked to, and make sure they return for their second dose to ensure they receive maximum protection against COVID-19.

 Everyone, whether they had the vaccine or not, is asked to continue to follow all the guidance in place to control the virus and save lives.

4th Jun 2021

General Practice Data for Planning and Research (GPDPR) - Updated 23/08/2021

Update: To provide more time to speak with patients, doctors, health charities and others, the collection of GP data for Planning and Research in England has been suspended. There is currently no set date for when data collection will take place.

Original article below.

There have been reports in the press regarding the General Practice Data for Planning and Research (GPDPR). This invloves 'NHS Digital' extracting patient data from GP records for use in supporting planning and research.

It is a legal requirement for all GP Practices to share this data.

The data held in the GP medical records of patients is used every day to support health and care planning and research in England, helping to find better treatments and improve patient outcomes for everyone. NHS Digital has developed a new way to collect this data, called the General Practice Data for Planning and Research data collection.

Please click the below links to find out more:

General Practice Data for Planning and Research (GPDPR) NHS Digital Website

NHS Digital's Privacy Notice

NHS Digital's Tranparancy Notice

Opting out

There are two types of opt-out forms depending on how you would like your data to be handled.

- Type-1 Opt-out (Opting out of NHS Digital collecting your data. Please fill in this form and send it to portsdown.group@nhs.net )

Data sharing with NHS Digital will start on 1 July 2021.

If you have already registered a Type 1 Opt-out with us, your data will not be shared with NHS Digital.

If you wish to register a Type 1 Opt-out before data sharing starts with NHS Digital, this should be done by returning the above 'Type-1 Opt-out' form to us by 23 June 2021 to allow time for processing it. If you have previously registered a Type 1 Opt-out and you would like to withdraw this, you can also use the form to do this. You can send the form by post or email to us or call NHS Digital on 0300 3035678 for a form to be sent out to you.

National Data Opt-out (Opting out of NHS Digital sharing your data)

This applies to identifiable patient data about your health (personally identifiable data in the diagram above), which is called confidential patient information. If you don’t want your confidential patient information to be shared by NHS Digital for purposes except your own care - either GP data, or other data, such as hospital data - you can register a National Data Opt-out

Pandemic statistics
18th May 2021

We are open and have remained open during the COVID-19 pandemic!

It has been reported that GP surgeries have closed their doors during the covid pandemic. This is NOT the case for PGP! We have remained open, offering thousands of face to face appointments to patients, whilst maintaining a COVID-safe environment at the same time.

We've compiled some statistics which demonstrate the hard work the practice has been carrying out during the pandemic. Please click here to view our pandemic statistics!

 

14th May 2021

COVID 19 Vaccine Passport

From 17 May 2021, people in England who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can demonstrate their vaccination status for international travel. A full course is currently two doses of any approved vaccine. Vaccine status will be available from: 

  • the NHS App which you can download from app stores 

  • the NHS website (from 17 May 2021)

It may take more than a week for your identity to be checked and verified so you can use these services.

If you cannot access these online services, and you have had 2 vaccines, you can request a paper letter from the NHS by calling 119. Only call 119 if you had your second dose more than 5 working days ago. It may take 7 working days for the letter to arrive.

Portsdown Group Practice is not able to provide you with a letter that shows your COVID-19 vaccination status.

When you're planning your travel, check the latest information on demonstrating your COVID-19 status when travelling abroad on the gov.uk website. Make sure there is time to get  proof of your vaccination status before you leave.

30th Mar 2021

COVID-19 Update

We continue to make good progress with our COVID-19 vaccination campaign. We have now given over 24,000 vaccinations.

There are a few thousand patients that remain in the 50+ cohort and also the at-risk cohort. We are doing everything we can to contact these patients. If you are contacted by us, we kindly ask that you accept your vaccination invite or let us know if you do not want to be vaccinated.

We have now started giving second vaccinations. If you are not sure of the date of your second vaccination, please call us on 02392 009191. if you are housebound, we will be in contact with you shortly before you are visited for your second vaccination.

If you are aged 50+ and have not yet been contacted for your vaccination, please call us on 02392 009191 to arrange an appointment.

Mosque Clinic

We have been working with Jami Mosque and Portsmouth City Council to set up a 'pop-up' vaccination clinic at the Portsmouth Jami Mosque. The clinic is invite only and is running today. With this clinic we are aiming to vaccinate anyone eligible for the vaccine in a community setting to help increase the overall number of people who have received a vaccination in the city.  

Under 50s

We are not yet permitted to vaccinated patients under the age of 50 unless you are deemed to be moderate or high risk. Rest assured, we will contact you as soon as we are able to offer you a vaccination. We kindly ask that you keep an eye on this page for any future updates.

18th Mar 2021

COVID-19 Vaccinations Update

We are making good progress with our COVID-19 vaccination campaign. We have now vaccinated over 15,000 patients.

If you are aged 50 or over and have not yet been vaccinated, please call us on 02392 009191 to book your vaccination appointment.

Attending Kingston Crescent Surgery for your vaccination

We have updated our COVID-19 page with information about attending Kingston Crescent Surgery for your jab. The page now has important information about what to expect when arriving for your jab.

Text message invites

We have introduced new software which allows patients to book in for their vaccination by clicking a web link on their text message invite. This is allowing us to contact more patients in a shorter space of time. if you've not updated your contact details already, visit our 'Update my details' page.

Cohorts

We are now vaccinating all registered patients aged 50 and above. We are planning on also providing vaccinations to patients aged under 50 too. We can only do this once it has been permitted by NHS England.

Second Vaccinations

To be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 you need to have 2 jabs. If you have received your first jab, and do not know when your second jab is, please contact us.

 

4th Mar 2021

We've Updated Our Veterans Page

We've created a dedicated veterans page which contains various bits of information for veterans.

Please follow this link to access the new veterans page.

25th Feb 2021

COVID-19 Vaccinations Progress

We've been very busy vaccinating patients and healthcare workers since our last update in January and are making good progress with providing patients with their first vaccination.

We have so far given over 11,000 vaccinations to patients since mid December.

We have vaccinated most patients in the following groups:

  • Care Homes
  • Aged 80+
  • Aged 75-79
  • Aged 70-74
  • Aged 65-69

If you are in one of the above groups and have not had your first vaccination, please give us a call on 02392 009191 and select option 5 to speak to our booking team. if you are classed as housebound, we will contact you.

We are currently working on inviting patients in the following groups for their first vaccinations:

  • Clinically Extremely Vulnerable - This cohort has increased in size now that the government has expanded the criteria for shielding patients
  • Moderate Risk (Patients with long term conditions) - This is our largest cohort.

If you are in one of these groups, please wait for us to contact you. You can update your contact details here if needed. Please make sure we have your mobile number as this is the quickest and easiest way for us to let you know when your jab is due.

Once the above cohorts have been completed nationally, we will be permitted to move on to the following cohort:

  • Aged 60-64

Following this cohort the two remaining cohorts (at the moment) are:

  • Aged 55-59
  • Aged 50-54

We will also be starting to give patients their second vaccinations from March too.

 

21st Jan 2021

COVID-19 Vaccinations

We are making good progress with our COVID-19 vaccination campaign.

We are currently vaccinating patients aged 70 and above as well as patients classed as clinically extremely vulnerable. This is a large group and we ask patients to wait for your invitation. Please do not contact us to book a vaccination unless we have first contacted you.

If you are a healthcare worker and are not registered with us, please check with your registered practice regarding vaccination. If you cannot obtain a vaccination via your registered practice, please let us know and we will put you on our waiting list.

We have various methods for inviting patients for their vaccinations:

  • Text message - We may send you a text inviting you to click a link and book your appointment.
  • Text message - We may send you a text message asking you to call us to book your appointment.
  • Telephone call - If you do not have a mobile phone we may telephone you to arrange your appointment.
  • Letter - We may send you a letter if we cannot reach you via the above methods

If we don't have your mobile number, please fill in this form to update your details. This will help us contact you at the earliest opportunity to invite you for your vaccination.

We kindly ask patients to be ready to book their vaccination at short notice. This will significantly help us vaccinate patients as quickly as possible.

National Vaccination Centres

You may have heard in the press that national vaccine centres are being set up. In Portsmouth, a national vaccination centre is being set up at St James' Hospital. Some patients will receive letters from the NHS (not Portsdown Group Practice) inviting them to book their vaccination at a national vaccination centre.

If you prefer to have your vaccination with us, then please wait for us to contact you. 

 

12th Jan 2021

COVID-19 Vaccinations

We are now vaccinating patients against COVID19 using both the Pfizer-Biontech vaccine as well as the Oxford-Astrazeneca vaccine.

To date over 4000 of our patients have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

We politely ask patients to await an invitation to book their vaccination and do not contact us until we have contacted you. Make sure we have your mobile number so that we can invite you for your vaccination when it is due.

At the moment, we are limited by the number of vaccines we can give. We are provided with a set amount of vaccines each week which we then administer to patients. We are expecting this to change in the coming weeks, to a system which will allow us to order more vaccines and vaccinate more quickly.

We are only allowed to vaccinate those in the groups below, in the order listed below. Our current focus has been on care home patients, care home workers, over 80s (including housebound) and we are starting to begin vaccinating the 75+ cohort of patients.

  • Residents in a care home for older adults and their carers
  • All those 80 years of age and over and health and social care workers
  • All those 75 years of age and over
  • All those 70 years of age and over and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals
  • All those 65 years of age and over
  • Individuals aged 16 to 64 years with underlying health conditions
  • All those 60 years of age and over
  • All those 55 years of age and over
  • All those 50 years of age and over

Housebound patients in the above cohorts will be vaccinated when they are due.

To ensure you receive your vaccination invite, please let us have your mobile number by filling in this form. Text message is the quickest, most efficient method we have for booking patients in for their COVID19 vaccination, so please make sure we have your current mobile number.

10th Dec 2020

COVID-19 Vaccination Leaflets

We have updated our dedicated coronavirus (COVID-19) web page with links to patient information leaflets regarding the COVID-19 vaccination.

Please visit the coronavirus webpage for more information

8th Dec 2020

COVID-19 Vaccinations

We are pleased to inform our patients that we are now providing vaccinations against COVID-19.

The Government and Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation have developed a schedule for vaccinating patients based on several factors. Whichever group you’re covered by, we’ll be in contact as soon as we can to offer you a vaccination.

Please don’t contact the practice to arrange your appointment until we’ve informed you that we can provide you with a vaccination.

The vaccination consists of two jabs with a 12 week gap between each jab. You are not fully protected until after your second jab.

Eligibility

The JCVI has announced the order of priority for vaccination against COVID-19

The guidance takes into account a broad range of factors related to the increased risk of hospitalisation and mortality.

The order of priority for vaccination is as follows. The JCVI or Government may vary the focus as the vaccination campaign continues and if other vaccinations are approved and become available.

  • Residents in a care home for older adults and their carers
  • All those 80 years of age and over and health and social care workers
  • All those 75 years of age and over
  • All those 70 years of age and over and clinically extremely vulnerable individuals
  • All those 65 years of age and over
  • Individuals aged 16 to 64 years with underlying health conditions
  • All those 60 years of age and over
  • All those 55 years of age and over
  • All those 50 years of age and over

How do I get a vaccination?

If you are in one of the above eligible groups, we will contact you (by letter, SMS or telephone) when your vaccine is available with instructions how to book your appointment. We kindly ask patients to not contact us requesting vaccination unless we have contacted you. 

Please keep an eye on this page for future updates.

26th Aug 2020

We are covid-safe

We would like to reassure patients that we have taken all necessary steps to ensure that our surgeries are a safe environment for patients and staff.

We have completed risk assessments for all staff and departments within the practice, and shared the results.  We have implemented additional cleaning procedures in line with guidance and installed additional cleaning stations (i.e. hand sanitiser, wipes) around the practice for our staff and patients.

We have taken reasonable steps to maintain a 2m distance in the workplace, and for patients and colleagues visiting our sites – please take note of social distancing markers and supporting information in and around our sites.

Where people cannot be 2 metres apart, we have done everything practicable to manage transmission risk by staggering work and break times, rearranging working spaces and putting partitions in between desks.

We continue to monitor government guidance and our risk assessments to ensure our practices remain a safe place for all staff and patients.

We are open for patients with a pre-booked appointments. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you need to see a GP or nurse or any other member of the Portsdown team.

21st Aug 2020

Services Updates

Routine vaccinations and immunisations are important and are available for all elgible patients at the practice. If you are eligible for a flu vaccination we will offer you any other vaccinations you are eligible for when you attemd for your flu jab. If you would like to book an appointment for a non-flu vaccination or child immunisations, please give us a call or use our online services. We are still offering appointments for Minor Surgery, blood tests, NHS health checks, leg ulcer dressings and many more. 

2nd Jun 2020

Childhood Immunisations

During this current time it's more important than ever that your child is up to date with their immunisations. It is much safer to vaccinate them than not. We are offering childhood vaccinations for all children that need them. If your child is not up to date with their immunisations then please call us on 02392 009 191 to make an appointment. 

For more information, please click here to watch a short video.

9th Apr 2020

Are you experiencing a crisis?

Are you or someone you know experiencing a crisis and need urgent mental health support? Call 111 or visit www.111.nhs.uk and speak to the NHS Mental Health Triage Service.

Our NHS 111 mental health triage service provides advice, support and guidance, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for anyone living in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.

The Mental Health Triage Team has a wide range of skills, including on the phone brief psychological support and has access to key services and organisations that can offer mental health support to people in their time of need. 

 This service can also be also used by GPs and other healthcare professionals, the emergency services, mental health charities and any other organisations that come into contact with people experiencing a mental health crisis.

The Mental Health Triage Service can be accessed by phone by dialling 111 and online at www.111.nhs.uk.

If you are experiencing a life threatening emergency, please call 999. 

9th Mar 2020

Contact us online - it's easy!

Over half of our patients are registered for online services. The online services platform we use is called 'SystmOnline'. SystmOnline enables patients to request prescriptions, view their medical record and book & cancel appointments, from a PC or smartphone. It's very easy to use.

To register, we require ID, this is to ensure that your medical information is secure and not accessible by anyone other than you and the practice. If you are not already registered, please ask to register at reception when you are next visiting the practice.

We also use 'eConsult'. eConsult is a method for contacting the practice via our website. eConsult can be used when you need to seek non-urgent medical help from the practice. eConsults are reviewed by a doctor and you should expect to receive a reply within 48 working hours. 

We encourage all of our patients to use both SystmOnline and eConsult to interact with the practice. Both SystmOnline and eConsult save you time and allow you to contact the practice at your own convenience.

24th Feb 2020

Learning Disability Directory

We've updated our community page with a link to the Portsmouth 'Local Offer' website. The website is a great resource for helping young people with educational needs and it also contains a Learning Disability Directory of Services.

To access the website, please click here.

To access the Learning Disability Directory of Services, please click here.