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Pause in Covid vaccinations
We have been notified that the vaccination programme in Hastings will be paused next week. However, there is a drive to identify patients over 70 years old who have NOT received their first vaccination to attend the centre on Saturday 20th Feb between 09:30 - 18:00 - No prior appointment will be required.
All patients under 70 will need to wait for a formal appointment. Click here for the Observer article
Please be aware of Covid-19 Vaccination Scams
As many of you are aware, recently there have been a number of people who have fallen victim to scams relating to the vaccination programme. We have a toolkit to assist you with identifying scams and helping to raise awareness within your community. Please click the link below to find out more.
Covid-19 Vaccination Programme FAQ's
Please click here
for a comprehensive guide to assist you with any questions you may have regarding the current vaccination programme.
If you are a registered carer and would like support, care for carers have arranged some activities and support tools to help you during these times, please visit their Facebook page to find out more: https://www.facebook.com/careforthecarers/
Survey for fathers
Across Sussex consideration is being given to engaging fathers to ensure that key health messages are reaching fathers in order to promote the health and wellbeing of families and their children and ensure their inclusion in their babies life from conception onwards.
If you are a father, please take a moment to complete the survey in order to help us improve in developing services.
A short video explaining the COVID-19 vaccination process
If you have any queries, please email: email@example.com
COVID-19 Vaccination programme
The phased roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccination programme is continuing across Sussex.
As we roll out vaccines, we’d like to remind people of 3 things:
1. The NHS will contact you when it’s your turn, so please do not contact us beforehand.
2. Please act on your invite when it comes.
3. Remember Hands, Face, Space. It will save lives and help the NHS
Click here for more information
Are you a carer looking for support?
Do you currently look after someone who couldn't manage without your help?
It could be a friend, family member or neighbour who due to illness, disability, a mental health problem or an addiction could not cope without you.
Care for the Carers is here for you!
We are excited to announce a new project being run with Care for the Carers and your GP surgery to make sure you are supported in your caring role.
We can help with:
. Talking to a support worker about your situation, any concerns you have and what might help to improve things for you.
. Providing information, guidance and putting you in touch with others that can help you.
. Getting support from other carers through carers groups.
. Taking part in free activities such as cookery classes and wellbeing sessions.
. Getting emotional support, such as counselling.
. Helping you to complete CRESS to ensure a plan is in place in case of an emergency and you are not able to be there for the person you care for.
. Registering you with Care for the Carers so that you can receive our free magazine, newsletter, carers card and ongoing support and advice.
What do you need to do next?
. Let your GP practice know that you are a carer so that you can be added to their Carers Register to help make sure you get support and information.
. You can ask your GP surgery to refer you to Care for the Carers or you can contact Care for the Carers directly by phone 01323 738390, text 07860 077300, email firstname.lastname@example.org or via our website: www.cftc.org.uk.
We currently have flu vaccines available for the over 65 community, please get in touch if you would like an appointment.
Dear patient, with great pleasure, we are happy to announce that our merger application has been officially approved by the Clinical Commissioning Group. We have attached a document below informing you of what the process will be, key dates to remember and some frequently asked questions.
Christmas opening hours
As we are fast approaching the festive holiday period, we would like to announce some key dates to minimise disruptions in your healthcare.
Thursday 17th December – Organisation training afternoon (urgent GP service only)
Monday 21st December – Prescription request deadline
Closed - 25th December
Closed - 28th December
Closed - 1st January
Please remember to get your repeat prescription requests submitted in time!
COVID-19 Vaccination Programme
A national mass vaccination public campaign is being planned by NHS England and it will commence shortly in Hastings and St Leonards. The most recently published advice is that vaccines should first be given to people aged over 80 and health and social care workers (cohort 2), before being rolled out to the rest of the population in the order of age and risk. Patients meeting the second cohort criteria will be contacted directly. We are currently working with other GP practices in the area and the Clinical Commissioning Group regarding a local vaccination programme and will publish further communication once we know more. In the interim, we’d be grateful if you do not contact the practice to enquire about the vaccine. Many thanks.
Dr Chiuia's formal retirement from the partnership
We are writing to notify you that Dr Chiuia is sadly leaving the partnership and therefore, Hastings Old Town Surgery. His formal leaving date is 31st March 2021.
We are very appreciative for all the hard work that Dr Chiuia has done for the partnership over the years, and he will be sorely missed by patients and colleagues alike. He has played an integral role in the practice and has provided exceptional patient care, he will be very difficult to replace. We should like to wish him the best of success in all his future endeavours.
We are currently reviewing our GP resource and in the process of recruiting, and we will update patients in due course. For updates and further information please visit the news section on our website.
We should be grateful if you do not call the practice to discuss this, but refer any queries to Email: email@example.com
If you are having trouble retrieving hospital results, follow up appointments and other hospital-related issues, please contact PALS below and they will be able to help you.
Please do not contact the surgery as we are unable to help with these queries.
Apologies for any inconvenience, however, these matters cause safety issues when not dealt with through the correct channels.
CQ PALS esh-tr.PALSH@nhs.net 0300 131 5309
DGH PALS esh-tr.PALSE@nhs.net 0300 131 4784
Visiting the surgery safely
Thank you for your patience and support over the last few months – it is much appreciated. To ensure that we can continue to operate and keep you and our staff safe, we would appreciate it if you could familiarise yourself with our Covid-19 operating procedures:
- Please do not attend the surgery unless you have an appointment or made an arrangement with our reception team.
- Please note that we will issue prescriptions and Fit Notes electronically to reduce the number of people needing to visit the surgery.
- If you do not manage your repeat prescriptions electronically, please use post boxes at each surgery for repeat prescription requests.
- We are still operating a ‘locked door’ policy. As such, a member of the team will meet you at the door and you will be escorted to and from your appointment.
- Patients will be required to wait outside until their appointment time and when the lobby area is free. So please arrive as close to your appointment time as possible.
- Patients are required to wear a facing covering when attending the surgery/appointment. We would be grateful if you can provide your own mask when attending any future appointments. If you are unable to wear a mask, you will be given a visor. Any mask exemptions must be authorised by your GP prior to arriving at the surgery.
- Patients are kindly asked to attend alone. If you do require a carer to accompany you, we must be notified at the time of booking the appointment.
- We ask that only one parent and carer accompanies a child/infant.
- We have limited the number of seats in the waiting areas to reduce the volume of people waiting at any one time.
- Reception staff wipe down seating areas, reception desks, door handles and surfaces hourly using a disinfectant.
- We have extended our appointment times to allow us to wipe down and clean consulting rooms after each patient.
- For any other queries, please contact us via telephone, email, engage consult (online) or register with us for online access.
Thank you for your understanding.
Repeat Medication Requests
If you require repeat medication from the surgery, please make the request via email or a handwritten request. This helps to eliminate any potential errors caused by verbal pronunciation.
Over 65's flu vaccination update
We have been very busy since the launch of this years flu vaccination programme! Thank you to all patients who have attended and helped us maintain a safe environment during this busy period. Due to a national shortage in flu vaccinations, we are currently out of stock with regards to our over 65's supply. We are continually keeping in touch with our suppliers and are actively trying to source more stock. If you urgently require a vaccination, please contact local pharmacies as we are aware that some pharmacies do have limited stock. We will continue our efforts in refreshing our supplies and will update you as soon as we have made any progress with this.
Hastings & Rother Healthcare Merger Proposal Engagement
We would like to thank everybody who participated in our merger proposal engagement. Please click the document below to view the full summary.
Merger Engagement Summary
Please visit: Station Plaza Health Centre 1st Floor
01424 464750 Patient Freephone Number: 0808 1681282
The winter is coming ! This might make it tricky to know when you or children should go to work /school. Please follow this advice to help make those decisions. Please be aware surgeries CAN NOT arrange testing in any way. Also, we cannot provide any letters for schools/nurseries/work to say you haven’t got COVID only a negative test is acceptable.
Do contact us though as you would normally if you feel you or your child is unwell enough to need medical input.
Our flu immunisation clinics are currently filling up very fast, this first phase of immunisations are strictly for patients over 65 or at high-risk. If you fall into this category, please contact us on 07867 504 259 to secure your appointment
Saturday 19th Sep - 8am-1pm
Monday 21st Sep - 5-7pm
Thursday 24th Sep - 5-7pm
Saturday 26th Sep - 8am-1pm
Monday 28th Sep - 5-7pm
Thursday 1st Oct - 5-7pm
Saturday 3rd Oct - 8am-1pm
OUR FLU VACCINATION PROGRAMME IS STARTING SOON!
CLINICS ARE STARTING ON THE SECOND WEEK OF SEPTEMBER
(Further updates to follow)
On Wednesday 19/08/2020 from 13:00, our clinicians will be attending a mandatory online training event. This means that we will have very limited clinical cover all afternoon. We will have a GP available to take care of any emergencies. Our normal schedule will continue on 20/08/2020. Sorry for any inconvenience caused.
Everything you need to know about cervical screening
Cervical screening, or the “smear test”, is a routine health check that identifies potentially harmful cells and changes on the cervix. Cervical screening is not a test for cancer but catching any changes early can reduce your risk of developing cervical cancer. Cervical cancer kills two women every day. Regular screenings can help reduce that number, which is why it’s so important you attend your screening when invited.
Our nurses are trained to do all they can to put you at ease during your appointment and are on hand to answer any questions or concerns you may have. However, whether you attend your screening or not, is ultimately your choice.
As part of a national infection control scheme, we are kindly asking all patients attending appointments to wear a face-covering when entering the surgery.
If you forget to bring a face covering, please ask a member of our team who will be able to assist you.
Hastings and Rother Healthcare Merger proposal:
Churchwood, Hastings Old Town and Warrior Square practices are proposing to come
together as Hastings and Rother Healthcare from January 2021.
These proposals will not result in any significant changes to the services our patients
receive and patients will still be seen at their original surgery and have access to the
same clinicians should they wish.
Merging will introduce some important changes to improve patients’ experience and their
ability to access services.
Some of these improvements include:
. The ability to offer appointments for patients at other sites, should one be available
sooner (this means we maximise all of our daily appointment slots).
. Access to a wider range of clinicians – such as Clinical Pharmacists, Prescribers,
Advanced Nurse Practitioners, Paramedics, Mental Health Workers, Physiotherapists
and General Practitioners with specific interests, such as cardiology and diabetes.
. An advanced support function and upgraded telephone systems – Investing in more
advanced call handling technology and robust online appointment booking, which will
result in better response times and a broader range of skilled support personnel to
manage patient queries.
Our overarching goal is to provide patients and staff with a more effective way of offering the
highest levels of healthcare by integrating our systems and providing access to a wider
range of services.
Can I still see my clinician at my registered practice?
Yes. Your current services will stay the same, however, you will be given more options to
take advantage of if you require specialist treatment or an earlier appointment.
Will I be expected to visit different surgeries after the merger?
You will not be expected to travel further than you are accustomed to. However, if we have
an appropriate appointment sooner, you will be offered this as an option.
How would I contact the surgery?
Contacting your surgery will remain the same, any background changes will be seamless to
Will the surgeries still open on an evening?
Our extended hours’ services will remain the same, our main goal is to improve services for
Is there parking at the surgeries?
Churchwood Medical Practice has a private car park and plenty of on-road parking
Hastings Old Town Surgery has a paid public car park directly next to it, free parking is
available via a 10-minute walk.
Warrior Square Surgery has free on-road parking available around the square and in
Can I request to register at a new surgery if I am not happy with the merger?
If you are in a catchment area where there is more than one surgery, you are entitled to
make an application to that practice to register with them. If you need any assistance you
can contact the Clinical Commissioning Group on firstname.lastname@example.org for a
Following on from our announcement about Guestling Surgery and a lot of enquiries about this, please see the statement from the Clinical Commissioning Group for East Sussex:
"As of 1 June 2020 NHS East Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) have not received any enquiries from practices wishing to make an application to open a branch surgery in Guestling or the surrounding area.
Should any such applications be received, the CCG would assess them in accordance with established national guidance to ensure they meet NHS England standards.
Any further queries relating to this can be directed to the CCG Primary Care team by phone on 0300 131 4425"
▪️We can still dispense your medication up until 30th June but please ensure, if you are currently a dispensing patient at Guestling, you find a pharmacy of your choice and ask them to nominate you so they can dispense your medication after 30th June.
Changes affecting Guestling Surgery and arrangements for your care
It is with deep regret that I have to advise you that we have taken the very difficult decision to permanently close our branch surgery at Guestling. Despite the best efforts of the surgery to maintain a local presence, we will be without premises once our notice period expires on 30th June 2020 and therefore, the branch surgery will have to close.
Patients who use Guestling Surgery will remain registered with Hastings Old Town Surgery, and will be able to be seen and access services at the new premises at the Ice House, Rock-a-Nore Road, Hastings, TN34 3DW. This surgery has been recently redesigned, and refurbished and equipped with the needs of all patients firmly in mind. For those without their own transport, there are good public transport links from the Guestling area to the new surgery and, in line with the recent changes made for the Covid-19 pandemic, you will be able to make use of telephone appointments and video consultations.
If you currently use the pharmacy at the Guestling Surgery, there are a number of other pharmacies in the Hastings area, some of which offer delivery options and other additional services. You can find out about nearby pharmacies using the ‘Find a pharmacy’ option on the NHS website. Patients are encouraged to contact pharmacies directly to discuss their policy on deliveries as well as an understanding of exemptions and arrangements.
Should patients wish to seek to register with an alternative practice they should contact East Sussex CCG Primary Care team by phone on 0300 131 4425 or by email at email@example.com who will be able to help.
Prescriptions during COVID 19 measures
“We are receiving an increase in requests for extra medication. Please note we will not be issuing larger than usual requests following NHS guidance that there is no need to stockpile medications. Patients stockpiling medications increases the risk of shortages for other patients”.
To ensure the ongoing health of our community we are still doing smears, childhood immunisations and other essential medical issues.
These will all be done at Churchwood medical practice in Hollington.
Patients entering the building are strictly screened and only allowed in if they have an appt. A limit to the number inside at any one time is being adhered to and time for thorough cleaning after each patient.
Please do call your usual practice to book in and if you aren’t sure whether something is essential eg blood test please call to check.
Don’t put these things off as we don’t want us to defeat corona but fall ill from something else very preventable.
AN ESSENTIAL DIGEST of all the lines of HELP
available in HASTINGS during Covid 19:
Hastings Covid-19 Community Support Hotline
Do you or does someone you know need help?
Residents of Hastings and St Leonards, or their friends, family or carers, can contact Hastings Borough Council on a special helpline: 01424 451019, open 9am – 5pm Monday – Thursday, 9am – 4.30 pm Friday. More info and an online form for non-urgent enquiries is available here:
Hastings Emergency Action Response Team
Visit the Hastings Heart website to ask for help with shopping, collecting medications, posting mail, dog walking or other errands and support: www.hastingsheart.com
Hastings Foodbank and the other social action projects run by King’s Church are still open! If you are facing financial hardship and need to be referred to the foodbank, or if you’re pregnant and in need and would like to be referred to Baby Basics, please contact Hastings Borough Council’s Covid-19 response number.
We are also fundraising at this time so that we can get food, toiletries, nappies and other essentials:
Feeling isolated, anxious or lonely and need someone to talk to?
CONNECT IN is HVA's Telephone Befriending Service. If you know someone who would benefit from having someone to chat to, visit
Hastings Relief Fund
Thank you so much to everyone who has donated to the Hastings Relief Fund so far. Many local residents have been supported by charities and community initiatives that have responded rapidly over the past few weeks, for example with food deliveries to the doorstep, or a friendly telephone call to someone who is isolated. You can find out more and donate to the Hastings Relief Fund here:
Funding for charities and other community initiatives
Last week the Government announced additional funding for charities and other community initiatives, to enable them to continue to provide vital support to people affected by the coronavirus pandemic or to set up new services to support their vulnerable clients at this time. You can find out about the Government’s announcement, and other sources of funding,here:
Care For the Carers
Care for the Carers are still here for carers and working hard to keep you connected with their services and one another. Their Carers Hub is open virtually and as a carer, you can access information, advice and guidance by contacting in the usual way, 10am-5pm Monday-Friday (except Bank Holidays). You can get in touch as follows:
• Call us on: 01323 738390
• Text: 07860 077300
Beware of scams!
We are aware of a few reports of scams, with unscrupulous people trying to take advantage of the coronavirus pandemic. Please be as vigilant as ever, and if you have any concerns please contact the relevant organisation directly, and follow the Police’s Action Fraud’s advice:
Our coronavirus resources news page has been updated with the latest information on keeping safe, supporting others and useful information for groups and organisations, including easy-read guidance on how to support those most likely to get poorly from coronavirus.
Coronavirus Street Based Response
Looking for street based support in your area? Sam Kinch and the Heart of Hastings team have been working to log street-based community support in Hastings and St Leonards. You can now view local support available across the town on Google Maps. Find out more here:
Groups & Organisations
Is your group or organisation seeking new volunteers to support your current provision? Or are you looking for volunteers as part of new plans you are putting in place? If so, please let us know by emailing:
The latest information about Foodbanks in Hastings & St Leonards is available on our website:
There are a number of mental health support and wellbeing services available locally and nationally including Southdown, Hastings i-rock, Samaritans and more. Follow the link to our news page below for more information and contact details:
LIVI video doctors appointments
As many of you are aware, an NHS mailout has reached many local homes promoting a new mobile App which allows patients to book video calls with a doctor during weekends and evenings.
However, it was incorrectly sent to Hastings homes, this service is currently only available in Eastbourne, Hailsham, Seaford & Bexhill at selected surgeries.
Distance may make the heart grow fonder, but it certainly can make providing care to a loved one difficult. With the tips and resources found on this site,
We have been notified that Lloyds pharmacy in the High street, Hastings, will sadly be closing their doors on a permanent basis as of 31st December 2019.
Notice to all patients;
We have been successfully implementing our text messaging service to inform you about appointments, test results and other important information. This saves a lot of time and resources for both parties. However, many of our patients have either not given their consent to take part in this communication stream, or have not updated their mobile telephone number.
If you have not given us consent yet, it is very simple to do so, you can either telephone the surgery or you can visit the reception team and do it in person.
Due to changes in our prescribing system at Hastings Old Town Surgery, our repeat prescription turnaround will be increased to 72 hours (excluding weekends and public holidays) with immediate effect.
Sorry for any inconvenience caused.
We would like to inform all patients that due to an increase in last-minute appointment cancellations, any patients who cancel an appointment less than an hour before they are due to attend, will be issued a "Did not attend" letter.
In most cases, we are not able to re-book these appointment slots, which in effect, has a negative effect on other patients.
Thank you for your understanding.
Click here to find out more
Don't forget to sign up at reception so that you can access pharmacy services & medical content. (The appointment booking function is currently suspended due to our clinical triage system.)
Take part in our patient survey in order for us to continue making improvements to our service, please print and hand it into the surgery on your next visit.
We all go through low points at times in our lives and it is not unusual to experience symptoms such as stress, anxiety and depression. Health in Mind is a free NHS service for anyone in East Sussex experiencing these kinds of emotional or psychological difficulties. http://www.healthinmind.org.uk/
Carer's break information can be found on the East Sussex County Council website or by following the link: Carers directory and follow the link for Adult Social Care.
Take The Friends & Family Test - The NHS friends and family test (FFT) is an important opportunity for you to provide feedback on the care and treatment you receive and to improve services. As ever your feedback is extremely important to us so please follow this link and spend a couple of minutes helping us improve!
Facebook: 'Like and Follow' Hastings Old Town Surgery on Facebook. You will find updates every day on our clinics and clinicians and lots of useful information on health and welfare. Click here