Residents in Tameside and Glossop can be assured that NHS primary health care and urgent care services are still 'open for business' during the coronavirus pandemic even if it's not related to COVID-19.
A reduction in numbers of residents presenting with an unwell child, those with cancer symptoms or a long-term health condition including mental health has been seen in Tameside and Glossop, and people must continue to seek the appropriate medical help or treatment.
NHS Tameside and Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group Co-Chairs, Drs Asad Ali and Ashwin Ramachandra, said: "GP practices remain open and are taking measures to ensure the safety of all patients and staff. Patients are asked to phone their practice in the first instance or visit their practice website for details about accessing their GP via online consultation. Suitable arrangements will be made for those who do need to be seen face to face. In some cases, this may not be at their usual practice location.
"GP practices and hospitals have strict infection prevention and control measures in place, so it is safe to attend appointments. It is important that patients attend routine appointments, such as antenatal checks, sexual health advice and contraception, and childhood vaccinations, as normal if they have been informed that it is going ahead."
Medical advice, help and treatment is still available when needed. Parents especially are being reminded to seek medical advice if their child is unwell as far fewer children are being taken to their GP or A&E at the present time compared to the same period last year. While children can catch COVID-19, they may not have symptoms and the virus is rarely serious for younger patients.
Only attend A&E department or call 999 if it's an emergency. If a health condition requires prompt medical help to avoid it deteriorating, but is not life-threatening, you should ring your practice, use NHS 111 online or ring 111 or attend the Urgent Treatment Centre. You can find more help on when to use the different Urgent Care services on www.nhs.uk
The advice regarding coronavirus remains the same. Anyone who has symptoms of this illness (a new continuous cough and/or a high temperature) will need to self-isolate at home for 14 days along with other members of their household. They should not go to a GP practice, pharmacy or hospital. This is to help limit the spread of the virus.
For further information on how to access services visit: www.tamesideandglossopccg.org/accessingcare