NHS Dumfries and Galloway has worked closely with the region’s GP practices to ensure that we are best placed to meet the challenges of the COVID-19 situation.
We have now decided that some non-urgent clinics and appointments will be suspended to allow GPs to focus on the most vulnerable patients with the most complex needs. Commenting on the move,
NHS Dumfries and Galloway Deputy Medical Director Dr Grecy Bell said: “I understand that some patients may be worried about some of the changes that are happening in their GP practice.
“I want to reassure all residents in Dumfries and Galloway that all GP Practices remain open, although they may be operating their appointment system in a different way than usual.
“GPs are able to deal with many problems over the phone and will be trying to deal with as much as possible in this way.
“Please be assured that if you need a GP, they will still be available to help you. The practice staff may need to ask more questions to ensure you are dealt with in the safest possible way.
“We are asking the public to understand that we do not take this decision lightly. We appreciate that this may cause inconvenience to some patients but it is vital that GPs have the ability to concentrate their work on those patients who are most in need of their attention during this challenging time.
“Please continue to order your medication as normal and do not order more than you need.
“I would like to thank members of the public for their consideration to date and ask that they help support their local GP practice by following all advice given. We kindly ask that patients do not make unnecessary requests for non urgent appointments until further notice.”
Continuing Dr Bell added: “I want to remind anyone who feels unwell with the symptoms of COVID-19 (a new cough and a fever), please check the NHS Inform website (www.nhsinform.scot) and follow the advice provided.
“You may be advised to self-isolate at home. There is no need to contact the GP surgery. If you are showing symptoms of breathlessness, please contact your GP.
“If you feel your condition is deteriorating such as that you would like some medical advice, then please contact your GP practice by telephone and arrange a telephone consultation with the GP. Please do not visit the practice or a pharmacy if you have symptoms.”