GFMP COVID 19 VACCINATION CLINIC
GFMP are pleased to let you know that our practice will be participating in the Covid vaccine rollout. We are yet to be given a start date for this program but we are already working on how best to run our vaccination clinics.
The Australian Government has set out priority groups for vaccination. We will contact existing patients in these priority groups to advise about vaccine availability and appointments as the vaccine becomes available.
You can check which group you will be allocated to here: https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/coronavirus
If you would like more information about Covid vaccination, you can click here: https://www.ncirs.org.au/covid-19/covid-19-vaccines-frequently-asked-questions.
We will continue to keep you updated.
Due to recent government legislative changes the Medicare-subsidised telehealth services, introduced as a key part of the COVID-19 response, will now be restricted to people who are accessing telehealth consultations as part of receiving care from their regular GP or medical practice. This is part of an overall strategy to promote “continuity of care” with a nominated GP and or practice.
Patients will now be required to have had at least one face-to-face consultation in the last 12 months with their nominated general practice, to allow access to telehealth medicare rebates.
This requirement will not be required for people under the age of 12 months, travellers from Victoria or people who are experiencing homelessness. These people will be able to have access to any provider of general practice health care.
We understand that this might have an unexpected impact on many of our regular GFMP “family” of patients. In particular, for those of you who only need to see your GP every 2-3 years for your health care needs. We want to make sure no one is disadvantaged by this change in the medicare requirements and so will work hard to ensure all peoples healthcare needs are met at all times.
If you would like to have a telehealth appointment but possibly dont meet any of the new requirements, you are still able to access a telehealth appointment but will not receive a government medicare rebate – which means a private fee will apply.
Alternatively please call the surgery to arrange a face to face consultation if you intend for GFMP to be your regular practice.
Glebe Family Medical Practice
Speak Out is a domestic and family violence prevention campaign initiated by the NSW Department of Communities and Justice.
It aims to empower people experiencing domestic and family violence to seek help by calling the NSW Domestic Violence Line on 1800 656 463. This line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with interpreters available and all calls are confidential.
GFMP would like to thank all our patients who participated in our patient survey!
Here are the results!
Check in with your GP
Now more than ever it’s important to stay fit and healthy. As NSW opens up again, don’t delay, and check in with your GP whenever you need to.
Our practice is clean and safe, and telehealth consultations are available for anyone. If you have a chronic illness, are due for an immunisation, or if you have any physical or mental health concerns at all, it is important you contact your GP for a telehealth consult. During the consultation your doctor will then advise if you need to be seen in person.
We keep our patients safe by:
- phone screening of patients on booking
- physical distancing of patients with separated seating and staggered appointment times
- strict cleaning measures
- reduced number of people in the surgery
- always seeing people with acute respiratory symptoms via telehealth first
Other News from Glebe Family Medical Practice
Dr Charlotte Hespe is back in surgery and is taking appointments on Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s.
E-prescriptions are coming soon! For more information please watch this video: https://vimeo.com/420508998
This year it is even more important to get your flu shot due to COVID-19, particularly those in vulnerable groups or over 65 years of age.
Influenza vaccine will not directly protect a person from COVID-19, but will help reduce the severity and spread of the flu which can lower a person’s immunity and make them more susceptible to other illnesses, like coronavirus.
It’s also important to remember that from May 1, all aged care workers and visitors must have been vaccinated against seasonal influenza to enter an aged care facility.
As you are all well aware, we are facing extraordinary times during the Covid-19 pandemic and accessing healthcare is not straightforward. GFMP has therefore adopted some new measures to ensure you can access high quality care at the clinic during these times.
If you are booked to attend the practice for a face to face consultation then please note the following:
• We will ask you screening questions at booking and on the day of your appointment about COVID symptoms and exposure.
• Although Mask wearing is no longer mandatory in the practice, we highly encourage you to bring a mask with you and wear it whilst in the reception area and during your consultation.
• We request that you use hand sanitiser and check in with our QR code on arrival.
• We are continuing to practice social distancing in our waiting room which means there is limited seating and you might need to wait outside under cover on the footpath or in your cars. Our reception staff will let you know when the doctor or nurse is able to take you into their room.
GFMP is currently offering telehealth options for all patients
Please note that a Medicare rebate for the cost of the consultation is only available to people who have attended a face-to-face appointment in the past 12 months.
If you have not attended the practice in the past 12 months, our staff will assist you in making a face-to-face appointment to see your usual GP.
Telehealth has been a wonderful new Medicare initiative and helps us to look after you safely during this ongoing pandemic. It also helps to manage our social distancing within the practice, by decreasing the number of people needing to attend in person. Many patients have found it to be a really useful and convenient option for their health care.
We have found that many types of consultations are suitable for telehealth including:
• Acute and chronic medical issues
• Mental health consultations
• Health care plans
• New and ongoing Specialist referral requests
• Follow up discussions about investigation results
• Prescription renewals.
Telehealth is completely confidential and designed to protect your privacy at all times with the doctors and nurses operating out of their private consulting rooms.
We have 2 options available for Telehealth Consultations here at GFMP
1. Video Consultations
This is our preferred option as it allows you and the GP to see each other during the consultation.
Telehealth video consultations are ran through a platform called GP Consults. This platform is easy to use provided you have a smart phone, or access to a tablet/computer.
You will be sent an SMS with a link when the doctor or nurse is ready to start the consultation – please follow the prompts and ensure that you allow access to your microphone and camera. You will then be connected directly to the doctor or nurse. You do not need to install any applications on your phone to conduct the video chat.
Please ensure you are in a private quiet space to allow confidentiality during your video consultation and make sure that you let the doctor or nurse know if you do have other people present or participating in the consultation.
2. Telephone consultations
Although this may not be our preferred option, we understand that many people do not have access to a smart phone or a reliable internet connection and will need to use this method for telehealth consultations.
Telephone is easy and familiar to all of us. However, please note it is essential that we have a current phone number that you will have accessible to you at the scheduled time of consultation (and until contacted by the doctor or nurse).
As for video consultations, we ask that you ensure you are in a private quiet space to allow confidentiality during your telephone consult and that you inform the doctor or Nurse know if you have other people present or participating in the consultation.
We ask that you have your phone near you at the time of your telehealth consultation so that you do not miss the SMS link for your video consultation, or the phone call for your telephone consultation.
No matter what happens with the Covid-19 infection in our community, our regular health care needs will continue and so it is essential that we have a safe way to interact with you all easily as well as have a safe clinical space to see people who need to be seen face to face.
We look forward to being able to look after your health during these times – and most importantly safely managing both your regular health issues and anything that might arise acutely over the next few months.
As you would all be aware, there is a wide concern about the current Coronavirus outbreak in Australia. Glebe Family Medical Practice is implementing measures to help reduce the risk of spread of Coronavirus and to protect our vulnerable patients.
Most importantly we encourage anyone with a fever, cough, runny nose or sore throat to not come into the practice without calling first.
Please note that our online booking system will be closed from Monday 23rd March. We apologise for the inconvenience.
Telephone and video consultations may be suitable for some isolated and vulnerable patients. Please feel free to ask our reception staff.
We are also encouraging patients to limit their time in the waiting room. We have changed our waiting room set up to allow social distancing but ask that you wait outside if you have respiratory symptoms or are concerned about being around other people.
Please let the front desk know that you are here and then wait outside or nearby in your car if possible.
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