Surgery News

July 2023 – Patient Newsletter

NHS 75

The National Health Service (NHS) is celebrating its 75th birthday this year and it is an occasion to honour the incredible work and dedication of the healthcare workers who have been the backbone of the service since its inception. 

The NHS has significantly improved health outcomes in the UK and has a long-standing history of providing free healthcare to everyone in the UK, regardless of their income or social status. Groundbreaking innovations and treatments, from heart transplants to pioneering cancer therapies, have become accessible to all, irrespective of wealth or status. It is a testament to the egalitarian principles of the UK and a reflection of the care and compassion that the healthcare workers have for their patients.

From the doctors and nurses to the administrative staff and patients, everyone plays a vital role in ensuring the smooth operation of the NHS.

To celebrate the NHS 75th Birthday we’re asking Health care First patients to get involved and send us digital or handmade artwork about the NHS 75 years of service.

You can email your designs to Healthcare.first@nhs.net or drop them off at a local practice. We’ll pick some of our favorite designs to feature in our next newsletter!

Meet your GP Practice Team!

Health Care First Staff

GP practices alongside dental practices, community pharmacies and optometry (eye health) providers, make up the first point of call for most people’s healthcare needs.

There are many people who work in GP practices, alongside doctors, in a variety of different roles, that make your healthcare possible, and they may be able to support you with more than you’d think…

Reception Team

Receptionists are often the first person you will see in a practice. They use customer service and their extensive knowledge of the healthcare system to welcome patients and help them in a number of ways. Our receptionists can:

  • Help you book appointments with the right healthcare professionals.
  • Identify services, you can access with a self-referral.
  • Make appointments for new care or services you might not be aware of.

Advanced Nurse Practitioner 

Advanced Nurse Practitioners are highly qualified and trained clinicians who can perform assessments, diagnosis and further tests, for a range of health conditions. 

Advanced Nurse Practitioners work independently from doctors and are able to prescribe medication, write sick notes and refer to other specialists. 

Many of Health Care First’s Advanced Nurse Practitioners have health specialism in certain conditions such as:

  • Infrequent Back and Joint Pain
  • Wounds, Scalds, Burns and Rashes
  • Shingles
  • Oral Thrush
  • Infections such as Chest, Ear, Throat, Sinusitis, boils and abscess’.
  • Diarrhoea and Vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Piles
  • Mental health conditions like depression
  • Gynaecological conditions 
  • And more…

If your health condition or need is included in the list above, then you may be given an appointment with one of our Advanced Nurse Practitioners, as they are very experienced in treating these conditions.

Clinical Pharmacist

In many cases, Clinical Pharmacist can provide expert health support for a range of medical needs, particularly with medicines. Clinical Pharmacists can help you by:

  • Giving advice and information about your health and minor ailments.
  • Performing blood pressure check and cholesterol readings
  • Supplying contraceptives.
  • Supporting you to manage and get the best from your repeat prescriptions.

For minor conditions and medication support, you may be referred to a pharmacist by a member of the Health Care First team. 

You can also visit a Clinical Pharmacist directly for support with any of the health needs above. To find a local pharmacy visit: www.nhs.uk/service-search/pharmacy/find-a-pharmacy

Summer Skincare!

Summer Skincare

The summer months are here and many of us will be hoping for plenty of sunny days to come.

Health care First wanted to give a quick reminder to patients that taking care of your skin during the summer months is important for looking after your long-term health.

Here are some top tips for taking care of your skin in warmer weather:

  • Protect your skin from harmful UV rays by wearing sunscreen with a high SPF. You’ll still be able to get a tan whilst wearing suncream and you’ll minimise the risk of cosmetic scars as well as cancer. Make sure to reapply every couple of hours and after swimming or sweating. You can find quality suncream from a local pharmacy provider: www.nhs.uk/service-search/pharmacy/find-a-pharmacy 
  • In addition to sunscreen, wearing protective clothing such as hats and sunglasses can also help shield your skin.
  • Staying hydrated is also important for your skin’s health. Drinking plenty of water can keep your skin hydrated and prevent it from becoming dry and flaky. 
  • Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables can also provide your skin with the necessary vitamins and antioxidants it needs to thrive.
  • It’s important to keep your skin clean during the summer months, as sweat and excess oil can clog pores and lead to breakouts. Use a gentle cleanser to remove dirt and oil, and exfoliate once a week to remove dead skin cells. You can find quality skincare products from a local pharmacy provider: www.nhs.uk/service-search/pharmacy/find-a-pharmacy 
  • Check your skin regularly. Look at moles, lumps and red or darker patches on your skin for changes in shape, size, symmetry or colour over time. You can compare your symptoms against signs of melanoma by visiting:www.nhs.uk/conditions/melanoma-skin-cancer/symptoms/  

If you are worried about your skin health or signs of cancer you should contact the surgery via PATCHS: https://healthcarefirst.co.uk/digital-surgery/ and one of our clinicians can refer you to a specialist dermatologist.

Sun Safety

Thank You Day!

Thank You Day

The 2nd of July was national thank you day.

We wanted to take the opportunity in this newsletter to firstly say a big thank you to all our patients. Your support and cooperation over the last few months have not gone unnoticed.  You have supported us by:

  • Using our online service platform: https://healthcarefirst.co.uk/digital-surgery/  which allows us to process your requests more efficiently and keeps phone lines open for less able patients.
  • By using pharmacy first care for minor aliment, you have helped free up clinician time for more serious conditions.
  • Using the NHS app to book and view appointment and order medication helps free up our staff to deal with other requests.
  • Using self-referral services helps us to get people who can’t self-refer to care quicker.

We want to reaffirm our commitment to you to provide the best possible care and we are grateful for the opportunity to do so.

We also wanted to say a big thank you to our staff team who continue to work hard to provide care for patients.

If you’d like to say thank you to a member of our staff team, we’d love to hear about it! Email us at  Healthcare.first@nhs.net 

Thank You Day