Pharmacy First goes live on February 1st, 2024

Starting February 1st, 2024, NHS England has created a new scheme to help ease the pressure on UK General Practice. It is called “Pharmacy First pathways”, encouraging eligible patients to utilise these services for timely and effective care. “Right patient, Right place, Right time, First time”

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Current Demand and Capacity challenges.

Dear Patients,

We feel it is important to keep you informed about the current status of our practice and the challenges we are facing.

At the moment, we are experiencing significant demand/capacity issues, due to a combination of recent IT issues backlog, long periods of clinical staff sickness, and the upcoming Easter holidays (staff booked annual leave). We are currently operating with a two-week wait on routine appointments. We understand the inconvenience this may cause and want to assure you that we are actively working to rectify the situation as fast and appropriately as we can. Unfortunately, the locum (temp staff) market is saturated, making it difficult for us to quickly alleviate the wait times.

We want to emphasize that a two-week wait is unusual for us. However, it’s important to note that the national average wait time is currently 19 days. Our goal is to bring our wait times back under 7 days as soon as possible.

In the meantime, we encourage you to utilise the Pharmacy First service for minor ailments and to consult our website’s “Who do I see?” page before calling for an appointment. This will help streamline the process and ensure that you receive the appropriate care in a timely manner. Thank you for your understanding and patience during this challenging time.

St Paul’s Surgery