Mountbatten House Surgery Update
We are delighted to announce Mountbatten House Surgery is now open. Please contact the surgery by telephone, email or online to make an appointment. Do NOT come to the surgery. Most appointments will be by telephone or video consultantion in the first instance. If you need to be seen you will be invited to attend the surgery.
We would like to thank you for your understanding and patience during this time.
The Beacon Health Group is now using DoctorLink
We have been looking at how we can improve access to practice services; DoctorLink is our new online service where you can:
- Access advice
- Book appointments
Sign-up is simple and you can create an account here: https://app.doctorlink.com/beaconhealthgroup/register
For all urgent appointments, we ask that you undertake a symptom assessment through DoctorLink.
The symptom assessment will ask you a number of questions to help to identify your problem.
The outcome of your assessment will direct you to the right treatment, whether emergency care, your GP, nurse or self-care.
If your outcome indicates that an appointment is required at the GP practice, you will be able to book an appointment.
You will then be contacted by the practice team, to arrange an appointment within the identified timeframe (as outlined in the outcome of your symptom checker).
The information you provide will be shared with our clinical team (where appropriate) and will assist in providing robust information of your problem to the required clinical team member prior to your appointment.
Extended Access Appointments
Mid Essex residents who need to see a GP or nurse on a weekday evening, Saturday or Sunday can now book an appointment by calling 01245 398055. (Phone line open on Saturday and Sunday for patients)
Appointments are available as follows:
Monday to Friday, 6.30pm to 8pm
Saturday and Sunday, 8am to 8pm
Consultations will usually take place via telephone or video call. If a face-to-face appointment is required, it will be at North Chelmsford Health Centre, Sainsbury's, 2 White Hart Lane, Springfield, Chelmsford, CM2 5EF.
NHS England and Public Health England are urging people to attend routine vaccinations to prevent outbreaks of serious diseases as part of a campaign to encourage people to use their NHS if they need it. Parents, in particular, are being urged to make sure pre-school children attend vaccination appointments, and pregnant women are being advised not to miss out on antenatal vaccinations which protect them and their baby.
Please call reception to book an appointment.
Local GP surgeries delivering gold-standard LGBT care
15 GP surgeries across three Essex districts have stepped up to meet the needs of their lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) patients, some among the first in the country to receive a special award. The GP practices in mid Essex, comprising Braintree District, Chelmsford City and Maldon District, have all received awards from the Pride in Practice programme for making services more accessible for LGBT people in their communities. And 11 have further cause to be proud as they are the first in the county to receive the Pride in Practice Gold Award – the highest possible rating available.
Dr Michael Brady, National Advisor for LGBT Health, NHS England and NHS Improvement, said: “Now more than ever it is vital that we address LGBT health inequalities. Pride in Practice is a great example of primary care services taking the lead to improve the care and experience of LGBT patients. Through better monitoring, staff training and the support provided by the LGBT Foundation, practices are able to both identify inequalities and address them. I applaud all these practices for their efforts in ensuring they deliver LGBT inclusive care and look forward to seeing more services taking up this initiative.”
Claudia Carvell, Business Development Manager for Pride in Practice, said: “This is a fantastic accomplishment for each of the 15 GP practices who’ve achieved a Pride in Practice award, meaning that more LGBT people than ever can have confidence that their identity will be recognised and considered as part of their GP appointments. We know that many LGBT people may worry about accessing services for fear of experiencing discrimination or even hostility on the grounds of their sexual orientation, gender identity or trans status and it is imperative that we overcome this to enable health providers to become more aware of the needs of LGBT communities and how to best address them. As Pride month approaches, there’s never been a better time for GP practices to take part. We’ve also recently launched our Pride in Practice Training Academy, a training and accreditation service designed to promote LGBT inclusion at home, at work and in the community.”
Surgeries that sign up to Pride in Practice receive personalised and ongoing support from the LGBT Foundation through dedicated account managers and access to resources. As well as the 11 gold awards, 1 silver and 3 bronze awards have also been awarded in mid Essex.
The 15 Practices are:
- Beacon Health Group (Danbury Surgery, Mountbatten House Surgery, Moulsham Lodge Surgery) (Gold award)
- Coggeshall Surgery (Gold award)
- Fern House Surgery, Witham (Gold award)
- Beauchamp House Surgery, Chelmsford (Gold award)
- The Writtle Surgery (Gold award)
- Rivermead Gate Medical Centre, Chelmsford (Gold award)
- Whitley House Surgery, Chelmsford (Gold award)
- Baddow Village Surgery (Gold award)
- North Chelmsford Health Centre, Chelmsford (Gold award)
- Blandford Medical Centre, Braintree (Gold award)
- Longfield Medical Centre, Maldon (Silver award)
- Chelmer Village Surgery, Chelmsford (Bronze award)
- Stock Surgery (Bronze award)
- Tollesbury Surgery (Bronze award)
Danbury PPG email address
Please note the Danbury PPG have now launched an email address for patients of Danbury Medical Centre to contact the PPG to share their experiences and with their suggestions for the practice. This enables a broader range of patients to share their views and allows people who cannot attend the meetings the chance to give their feedback. The email contents will be presented anonymously at the PPG meetings. The email address is - email@example.com.
Collecting controlled drugs
Controlled medicines are sometimes misused so they have stricter legal controls on their supply. Just to remind patients collecting controlled drugs that the dispensary have to follow guidelines set out to them so this process will take longer. The controlled drugs are ordered in however they are only dispensed when the patient arrives to collect them. The patient will need to provide photo I.D e.g. passport or driving licence. If you are collecting on behalf of someone else you may be ask to provide your proof of identity too. We may also confirm with the patient that their medicine is being collecting by someone else. The controlled drugs have to be checked by two members of staff and signed out so please bare this in mind when collecting and please be patient with the staff. Due to this longer process we ask that patients collect their controlled drugs before 6.00pm.
"State of Caring" survey request from Carers UK
Essex Adult Social Care would like to advise that Carers UK are running their "State of Caring" survey for carers to complete and share their experiences to create as full a picture as possible of people's caring experiences. Please click to complete the survey.
Phone Line Update
We have now merged our phone lines across the three sites to allow us to utilise all of the reception team in answering calls. The phone number for The Beacon Health Group as a whole is 01245 221777.
To further help with the volume of calls please can we remind patients that with our expanded clinical team you do not need to telephone the practice at 8.00am to make an appointment. If you have an urgent problem as long as you telephone the practice before 12.00 noon we should be able to accommodate your request. If you need a routine appointment for your long term condition review or medication review please telephone the practice after 10.00am. If you are requesting a home visit please call before 11.00am.
Advice for patients - Weaning opioids
We are contacting patients who have been taking painkillers for a long period of time, particularly a type of painkiller called an opioid; like co-codamol, co-dydramol, codeine, dihydrocodeine, and tramadol.
Recent medical evidence questions the benefit of opioids (which are in the morphine family) for long-term pain. Strange as it might sound – we don’t think that they are very good at killing pain at all when taken for more than a few months.
Please see the links for more information and advice.
Warning - Flu Vaccine Scam
Please note there is currently a flu vaccine scam being carried out in the local area in regards to asking for payment for the vaccine. The Beacon Health Group will not call you to tell you we cannot provide your flu vaccine unless you pay. Those eligible for the vaccine do not have to pay for it. If you are called by anyone please notify the police immediately. Do not give your bank details to anyone over the phone.
Extended Access Hub
The Beacon Health Group is now able to book GP-led appointments at a wider range of times in the ‘Extended Access Hub’, meaning patients who might not be able to get to the surgery during normal ‘working hours’ can now see nurse practitioners, GPs and healthcare assistants at other times.
You have a choice of evening and weekend appointments across mid Essex. These three hubs are open 7 days a week, 6.30pm-8pm on weekdays (9pm at Maldon) and 8am-2pm on weekends and bank holidays:
- Blackwater Medical Centre in Maldon
- Elizabeth Courtauld Surgery, Halstead
- North Chelmsford Health Centre in Springfield, Chelmsford
Three more hubs are available for weekend appointments between 8am and 2pm:
- Douglas Grove Surgery in Witham
- Greenwood Surgery in South Woodham Ferrers
- Mount Chambers Surgery in Braintree
People wanting an Extended Access appointment book it through The Beacon Health Group as they would any other appointment. Please note, these are not walk-in appointments – all appointments should be booked in advance. Appointments will be with the most appropriate clinician for the condition, which may be a nurse practitioner, GP or other healthcare professional.
If you no longer need an Extended Access appointment that you have booked, you should contact the surgery the appointment is booked with during working hours, or outside surgery hours, call 07384 579479 to cancel.
Social Prescribing Clinic
Frank a 'Social Prescriber' to here to help patients make changes to improve their social, physical and mental wellbeing by linking them with appropriate, non-medical support and guidance. Please contact reception to book.
Memory Assessment Clinic
We are pleased to announce that The Beacon Health Group is piloting a new service which will help to develop and improve the diagnosis and treatment of memory problems and dementia within primary care. If you or any family members would benefit from this service then please book an appointment at reception. Our health care assistants will carry out an initial memory assessment.
Patients and carers can also be seen by the Alzheimer's Society please contact reception to book.