Local NHS services are currently experiencing some of the most severe pressures in its history.
GP practices in Portsmouth have been facing rising demand for services, alongside escalating COVID-19 case numbers (a 65% increase) with cases in Hampshire higher than the rest of the UK. This rise in cases also means increased staff absences because of sickness, isolation requirements, or needing to care for unwell children.
This week, South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SCAS) and Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust (PHU) declared critical incidents, due to significant and sustained demand for services.
We are actively supporting our NHS colleagues in urgent and emergency care during these critical incidents and partners across Portsmouth and South East Hampshire continue to work together to help to alleviate some of these pressures.
However, we know through modelling that demand and prevalence of COVID is likely to increase over the coming weeks, with a peak of COVID-19 cases and NHS system pressures expected over the Easter period.
Our practice team has been working tirelessly throughout the pandemic and, like all practices in Portsmouth, we have been at the forefront of the NHS response, delivering the hugely successful COVID-19 vaccination roll-out while maintaining day to day medical care for our patients.
We are all working longer and harder than ever before to provide the very best care we can, under intense pressure.
To make sure people can get access to care safely and quickly, we aim to deliver a range of different ways of having an appointment to provide you with more choice and more convenience. These include phone consultations, online consultations or video consultations.
Face-to-face appointments are still available if you need them, however we will be prioritising urgent appointments over the coming weeks to ensure access to care is the best it can be.
We ask for your continued understanding and support as we strive to face these pressures. This may mean that you have to wait longer for a less urgent appointment or experience some delays. We thank you for being patient and kind to our staff if you need to wait longer to have your enquiry dealt with.
Please continue to limit the spread of COVID-19, the pandemic hasn’t gone away and we need your help to manage it. If you can, please take a COVID-19 test before coming into the surgery to limit the spread and keep our staff safe and able to work.