Health and social care staff across the borough are working flat-out to cope with the unprecedented health emergency of coronavirus. You can help by following NHS advice and using its services in the right way. These temporary changes will help to focus all our efforts and resources in the best way to tackle this outbreak.
Local GP practices are focused on helping patients who have COVID-19 and are not operating normally, but are all open from 8am to 6.30pm. Do not go to your GP surgery because this may lead to the virus spreading further, including to practice staff. If you need a GP appointment about another matter, you should stay at home and ring the practice in the first instance. Local health services are setting up special GP-run clinics in Ealing for patients who are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and need to see a doctor. These clinics will be staffed by doctors from the local NHS. Doctors from the local NHS will staff these clinics. More information about these clinics will be available very soon.
Because some GPs and their staff are likely to become unwell or to have to self-isolate, local practices are working together in networks to support each other. It is possible that if you need to see or speak to your regular GP, you will be given an appointment with a different doctor or practice to the one you usually see.
Our local hospitals are focused on treating people who have COVID-19. Surgery and operations that are not urgent are being delayed as doctors and nurses focus on dealing with the pandemic. Do not go to hospital if you think you have COVID-19 symptoms. You should always use the 111 online service for advice. If you cannot get online, telephone 111. Only call an ambulance in what you think is a life-threatening situation.
To help prevent the spread of infection, visitors are not currently allowed in hospitals except under very exceptional circumstances, including:
- For a patient at end of life
- One regular carer for a patient with additional needs, such as a patient with dementia
- One parent/guardian for a child
- One birth partner.
Emergency care for patients who do not have COVID-19 symptoms
Emergency care for patients whose condition is serious but not related to COVID-19 will continue as normal. In a life-threatening emergency, you should call 999 as usual.
During this period, hospitals will not be offering outpatient appointments except if urgent.
The hospital will contact patients and some follow-up appointments may be by telephone.
Councillor Binda Rai, lead member for health and adult services at Ealing Council, commended the local health services. She said: “Thank you for your understanding of the pressures on the NHS during this unprecedented time. Please continue to follow government advice on hand washing and stay at home unless you need to go out for essential reasons. If you have to leave your home, please keep ideally two metres apart from other people.”
For more information on public health advice for you and your family click here.