News

photo id
8th Apr

You need Photo ID for the local election on 2 May

Did you know that for the local council and Police commissioner elections on 2 May you will need to take along a photo ID to be able to vote?

Various forms of photo ID are accepted, including a driving licence, passport, Older Person’s Bus Pass, a blue badge or Disabled Person’s Bus Pass. You can also use an expired ID as long as the photograph is still a good likeness.

For those without accepted photo ID, a free Voter Authority Certificate can be obtained online. Applications must be submitted by Wednesday, 24 April to be processed in time for the 2 May elections. The Voter Authority Certificate is valid for 10 years and is valid for all elections.

For more information go to; https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/voting-and-elections/voter-id

You can also contact the Electoral services team on:
Email: elections@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk or Tel: 01305 838299

19th May 2023

GPRP Statement

Dear Patients

We wanted to respond to answer your queries following the Government’s release of its “Delivery plan for recovering access to primary care” today. A lot of the points in the plan are already embedded in many practices; we felt it would be helpful to clarify current operation procedures at both our Atrium Health Centre surgeries.

We know first-hand that things have been extremely busy, the pressure and demand for appointments is very high, and continues to remain so.

As you may be aware, we have recently moved to an eConsult GP appointment booking system to enable us to triage your requests more appropriately and have just moved to a cloud-based telephony system which provides you options for talking to the correct person at the practice.  We think patients will be able to see the how much better this makes the experience of trying to contact us both for GP appointments and other reasons. However, you are also probably aware that better phone access doesn’t mean we have unlimited appointments to offer when you do get through to us.

We have changed to an eConsult triage to ensure patient safety as we felt that restricting our Duty Doctor emergency lists morning and afternoon and then asking patients to contact 111 or visit their pharmacy when capacity was reached on the day was not the best course of action for us or you as patients.  This also means that we do not have to ask patients to call us another day, but please bear in mind depending on capacity, we may not be able to deal with every request same day. Using 111 or your local pharmacy may be appropriate, and you will be advised via the eConsult response if so.

The news about prescription medications available directly from Pharmacies is welcome; we always ask patients to visit their local pharmacies for many minor conditions as you will find you can access excellent help and advice quickly.  A lot of minor illnesses and injuries do not need GP input, so it allows us to be available for those that really do need an appointment with a GP, Practice Nurse or another member of the healthcare team. Please note however, these particular changes in the recovery plan are not in place just yet.  Once we receive any further information around this we will let you know.

As we use eConsults for GP appointments this provides us with a description of the issue you are contacting us about, and this helps our triaging clinician to direct you to the most appropriate person, in the most appropriate time frame. We have pharmacists, Nursing team, First Contact Physiotherapists and Social Prescribing Link Workers working as part of our team – therefore you may be directed to someone other than a GP.

The triaging clinician will also review the information you provide to decide if a face-to-face or telephone appointment is most appropriate.  Therefore the more information provided via a clinical eConsult is much better to enable the clinician to signpost most appropriately and provide you with the most convenient appointment.  We find that many issues are appropriate for telephone consultations, we can view your entire record and history, send prescriptions electronically directly to your pharmacy etc, and many patients prefer this rather than taking time out of their day to visit the Practice.  However face-to-face appointments will be offered where information supplied shows this is the best course of action.

We are pleased to see further advancement of the NHS app and we do recommend patients use this to order their repeat medication or book HCA appointments when invited and now you can view your GP record and test results.

We continue to work very hard to offer the best service for our patients; we appreciate your co-operation and support.

The Atrium Health Centre