NHS Open For Business: Help Us To Help You

You can still contact your GP, 111 online or call 111 for help. If you are told to go to hospital, you must go. We’ll give you the care you need. www.nhs.uk

If you or someone you know has a life-threatening injury or illness, such as severe chest pain, bleeding, loss of consciousness or signs of a stroke, call 999 or go to your nearest accident and emergency department.

Some hospital procedures, operations and clinics are continuing to take place in Devon. Hospitals are making their own local arrangements which may change over time. You should not attend any appointment if you are self-isolating due to COVID-19 or have been informed by the hospital not to attend.

GP practices in Devon remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic. If you need to see your GP, for example for back pain, arthritis or asthma, contact your practice via their website or by phone. Your consultation may be via phone, video or in person.

You can contact the practice online through the eConsult platform on our website or through the NHS app.  Our practice can now offer video consultations too.

Suspected Cancer
If you have symptoms that are new, persistent, concerning or progressive, contact your GP online via their website or on the telephone for an initial assessment.

The best chance of successful treatment for cancer is through early detection. GPs are able to assess over the phone and by video and if necessary, they can plan for you to safely be seen face-to-face.

We are treating people with cough or fever in separate locations from those with other symptoms to ensure it is safe for you to attend the practice,​ if we think it is necessary.

Clinicians are using protective equipment (such as masks) when they do see people face-to-face to minimise the risk of transmission.

Hospitals are continuing to offer tests for cancer, and treatment for cancer. Social distancing measures are in place to keep patients and staff safe when they do come in for their tests.  The type of assessment may change and it may take slightly longer than normal, but this is still better than delaying until after the pandemic.

Hospitals are taking care to make their cancer assessment services safe for patients to attend, where this is necessary. Some have moved cancer services off-site, some are using video consultations.

Paediatrics
We appreciate that everyone is trying to do the right thing by staying at home at this time, however, we are concerned that those caring for children, especially children with complex or underlying health conditions, may be too worried about going to hospital at this time to seek urgent medical help in the way that they normally would.

Nationally, the number of children with a delayed presentation to hospital is increasingly leading to further health complications and increased risk of serious illness, which could be avoided if medical help was sought sooner.

If you’re a parent with a seriously unwell child, we want you to know that the NHS is here for you.  Children still get sick and we want you to connect with us when this happens

If you have to go to A&E there will be special arrangements in place to protect you and your child from the risk of infection.

You know your child better than anyone else, and if you think your child is unwell or deteriorating you must seek medical help and not delay presentation. Doctors will want to make sure that your child is treated before their condition deteriorates.

Childhood Immunisations
It’s really important to attend for immunisations when you have been invited, they are the single most important way to protect you or your child from disease.

Vaccinating children helps prevent the development of deadly or incurable viruses and diseases such as Meningitis, Measles and Pneumonia.

Delaying vaccinations could leave you and your child vulnerable to serious illnesses

Book your appointment for immunisations as planned, staff will ensure that it is safe for you to attend.

Cervical screening
The cervical screening programme for routine checks is currently suspended but first calls and those who have previously had an abnormal result and are on a yearly recall are continuing.

If you have been asked to make an appointment for cervical screening, don’t put it off, It’s one of the best ways to protect yourself from cervical cancer.

Pregnancy
Continue to attend your scheduled appointments unless advised otherwise. If you are concerned about your own health, or the health of your unborn baby, seek advice from your midwife or maternity team.