COVID-19 - UPDATED PRACTICE PROCEDURES

Please see the below summary of the important steps we have taken to ensure our practice and patients remain as safe as possible during the Coronavirus pandemic.
We need your support and adherence to these changes if we are to remain open during the pandemic.

Due to the need to observe social distancing in order to reduce community spread of COVID 19 we have needed to make the following changes to our practice for the forseeable future. We
thank you in advance for your understanding and cooperation at this difficult time. We wish all of our patients and their families good health and strength to get through this together.

1) Appointments:

 i) We are being encouraged to conduct as many appointments over the phone as possible/safe to do in order to reduce footfall in the practice. For consultations that are completely related
to COVID queries only, the HSE have agreed to cover the cost of these for all patients. For all other queries / consultations /certificates / prescriptions, there will be a charge as usual for private patients, although most consultation charges will be reduced
to €45

ii) Unfortunately very routine/non urgent appointments will need to be deferred for the moment. The same applies to blood tests. For the moment we are still continuing to conduct blood
tests for more urgent cases. Please bear with us, and if a situation becomes more urgent, certainly contact us.

ii ) Baby vaccinations/other necessary vaccinations- We have been instructed by the HSE that it is vital to continue with normal schedules for baby and other vaccinations so this will
not be affected. The same applies to maternity care. Even if it is a routine appointment, patients still need to attend.

iv) Our administration staff have been instructed to ask every potential patient entering the surgery whether they have a temperature or any respiratory symptoms

v) In order to keep the waiting room as empty as possible, please only arrive at your appointed time and only the patient (or in the case of a child the patient and one guardian) should
present inside the surgery. Appointments will need to be kept to a strict 15 minute timespan to avoid overlap of patients.

2) Prescriptions:

Due to the overwhelming extra work we are sealing with at present, it is possible that prescription requests may take up to 3 working days to turn around. Prescription requests are best
written and posted into reception. We are leaving a template form outside reception for this. Alternatively a request can be made using our contact form on this website.

We are aiming to securely email many prescriptions to local pharmacies to avoid the need for any person to come into the surgery simply to pick up a prescription.

3) Work certificates may require a telephone consultation. Social Welfare Certificates also require a consultation and we will aim to conduct the majority of these by telephone.

4) Attendance at the surgery. Please call in advance before attending the surgery. We understand the phones will be even busier than usual and ask for your understanding. It is really
vital for everyones health including thestaff at the surgery, that no-one enters with any respiratory or flu-like symptoms, unless there has been a prior agreement made with one of our doctors to come at an appointed time. Where a situation becomes urgent
due to you or a family member becoming very unwell, especially if shortness of breath is occurring with possible COVID symptoms, please phone 999/112.

Once again we thank you for your help in fighting the community spread of COVID-19 and keeping our practice open to all of our populations' health needs at this extraordinary time of pandemic.

Dr Ruth Gallagher and Dr Caroline McPhillips, along with the staff of Mount Merrion Medical Centre