We are ensuring that we balance the need for some patients to be seen in clinics with the knowledge that COVID-19 is still present within the general population.
Below are the changes that we have made to our services to ensure that you receive the clinical care you require whilst protecting our patients and staff from increased risk of COVID-19.
Your first appointment
Your first consultation will often be via telephone. This allows for an in-depth discussion with the clinician to talk about your symptoms and for your clinician to provide you with advice and an exercise programme. Most clinical assessments can be completed effectively by using a telephone appointment.
For some clinical assessments, seeing patients within a clinic will be useful. This will be discussed with you. If you do not feel comfortable coming to a venue please discuss this and a telephone or video appointment can be arranged.
The clinic venue offered may not be the one closest to you. We have opened a limited number of venues to ensure we can maintain appropriate distance between patients and to ensure that surfaces are cleaned regularly so that we can keep patients and clinicians safe.
Prior to coming into clinic
Please do not attend your appointment if you have any symptoms suggestive of COVID-19. The key symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 are:
- A high temperature or fever
- A new continuous cough
- Loss or change of smell or taste
In addition, if you have come into close contact with any person who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the past 14 days, please do not attend your appointment.
If you are unable to attend your appointment because of new symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 or have had contact with anyone who has had confirmed COVID-19 in the past 14 days, please call us to rearrange your appointment. You can find the number for your service on the ‘Contact Us’ section of the website.
When you arrive at the clinic venue
If your appointment is in Northumberland;
- Please enter the department as usual and report to reception. Please ensure that you follow any directions relating to hand sanitising and social distancing.
For all other locations, please follow instructions you have been given or displayed;
- Please do not enter the venue prior to your appointment time.
- You will be required to wear a mask or face covering to your appointment and please don’t bring anybody else into the building with you.
- In some areas we are asking patients to wait outside or in their car – In these areas:
- If you arrive by car, please wait in your car.
- If you have not arrived by car, please wait outside (unless the weather requires you to come indoors). Your clinician will call you at the time of your appointment and complete a COVID-19 screening questionnaire and to invite you into the clinic. If you do not have a mobile phone, please only enter the venue at your appointment time. Your clinician will complete the screening questionnaire with you prior to entering the consultation room.
Your clinician will be wearing Personal Protective Equipment which may include a face mask, visor and apron so please don’t be alarmed by this. Please watch our short video below for further information: