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200901 | What’s happening with healthcare in West Cornwall?

What’s happening with healthcare in West Cornwall?

You may have noticed that healthcare in our area (and across the UK) has changed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here is a summary of information provided to the Penwith Integrated Care Forum on 9th July, that may be useful.

Routine work (non-urgent) was stopped, but this is now in the process of being ‘switched back on’ in a safe way.

Most GP surgeries have moved to a telephone triage system, which means that people who contact them for help are called in the first instance to see if the problem can be dealt with over the phone, or using video consultation, or photos that are sent to the practice.

In order to minimise the risk to those people who do need to be seen face to face,surgeries are using separate areas or buildings to see people with symptoms of COVID.These separate 'hot hubs' have meant that routine monitoring and assessments can re-start.

Community teams reorganised to form the Community Co-ordination Centre (CCC). This allowed all referrals to the community teams (district nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, home care teams, etc) to flow through one place and then be triaged to ensure the most appropriate action was taken.

There is a desire for more of the outpatient workload to be carried out closer to people’s homes, potentially involving having outpatients appointments in community hospitals,GP surgeries or usingnewer technologies to communicate with people.

How patients access urgent care services, such as the Urgent Treatment Centre atWest Cornwall Hospital and Minor Injury Units,is also being looked at. A new 'Think 111 First' scheme has been launched so patients can getpre-booked intoMinor Injury Units or the Urgent Treatment Centre at West Cornwall.

Waiting rooms have much smaller capacity, due to social distancing, which explains the need to try and reduce the amount of people just 18turning up. But, be reassured, no patient will be turned away from Accident & Emergency Department without being triaged first.

Delivery of the flu and pneumonia vaccinations may be organised differently this year, so look out for information, or contact your GP surgery, to make sure that you get your jabs if you need them.

Sophie Johnson, Town Councillor, Hayle North

via Hayle Pump