General Practice Bulletin – Friday, 19 June, 2020


General Practice Bulletin – Friday, 19 June, 2020

Date: Jun 19 2020 Author: SabahatHassan


General Practice Bulletin – Friday, 19 June, 2020

Issue 44


Please note that all GP Bulletins can be found on the Collaborative GP intranet site. The next bulletin will be on Tuesday, 23rd June, 2020.


In today’s briefing:                                                                        

  • Antibody Testing Programme Primary Care – update on progress
  • Guidance during Covid-19 on resuming Corticosteroid injections
  • Recommencement of faecal calprotectin service
  • Paediatric Diabetic Pathway
  • Priority groups for coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination: advice from the JCVI
  • Resumption of optical services
  • Restart of NHS dental services
  • Next phase of  coronavirus (COVID-19) app announced
  • Update from Macmillan for primary care
  • Cardiology A&G Service – Frimley North only
  • Virtual Safe Havens – Frimley South only
  • Ultrasound appointments – Frimley South only
  • Covid-19 sit rep FHFT
  • Frimley Collaborative CV19 Care Home Response Offer
  • Dates for your diary

Clinical hot topics and service updates                                     



Antibody Testing Programme Primary Care Staff– update on progress

The ICS Information Governance Sub-Committee, which includes representatives from Primary Care, has been scrutinising two options for rolling out antibody testing to NHS staff in Primary Care. Option 1 is an IT portal solution that allows staff to register online, have their bloods taken at their employing practice, and receive results via notification through the portal. Option 2 is a manual process in which staff members fill in a paper request form, have their bloods taken at their employing practice, and the practice receives results for their staff from the laboratory via the CCG Collaborative Quality Team. Both options needed a review to assess legal compliance and information security. A Data Protection Impact Assessment (DPIA) covering both options was passed through the sub-committee yesterday, and the assessment is being considered to decide which option is the most viable in terms of information security risks. Once that has been done, the process will be communicated to Primary Care via the CCG Collaborative Primary Care Teams.

Due to the degree of information governance scrutiny both options have required, expecting practices to start the programme by Monday 22nd June would not be feasible. We will communicate the preferred process early next week and the programme will be able to commence on or before 29th June.

A further update will be given via the next GP Bulletin.

For any queries, please contact the CCG Collaborative Quality Team at




Guidance during Covid-19 on resuming Corticosteroid injections

The ICS has pulled together guidance for primary and secondary care around restart of MSK injections. This also includes a consent document for your use.

Click here for the national guidance on Management of patients with musculoskeletal and rheumatic conditions who: – are on corticosteroids – require initiation of oral/IV corticosteroids – require a corticosteroid injection.

Click here for Frimley’s guidance regarding steroid injections during the Covid-19 pandemic.

This advice document has also been uploaded on to DXS for GPs to use during COVID-19 pandemic. The document has a section for patient label so can be printed off and used for patient consent. Please click on “COVID-19 Frimley” button on DXS and the form is stored under “Frimley ICS pathways and guidance”, and listed under the ‘guidance’ tab on the Frimley ICS landing page.

This will go live on Monday the 22nd of June in DXS.



Recommencement of faecal calprotectin service: Available now

Click here for details regarding the restart of the faecal calprotectin service. The sample requirements will continue to be the normal blue topped stool pot.




Paediatric Diabetic Pathway

As you are aware, children are more likely to present prior to diagnosis in DKA and a timely referral is important to prevent severe illness upon hospital presentation. Please click here for the FHFT flow diagram for T1DM. This guidance will be uploaded to DXS in the next few weeks.


FHFT would also like to offer GPs education via Zoom around the timing of diagnosis and also the on-going management and complications that patients would experience in this age group. It would also be an opportunity to ask any questions or problems that each service might be facing. Please contact if you would be interested in this.



Priority groups for coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination: advice from the JCVI

Interim advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has been published today on the groups that should be prioritised for a COVID-19 vaccination, if and when a vaccine is available. The committee advises priority vaccination of the following groups:

  1. frontline health and social care workers
  2. those at increased risk of serious disease and death from COVID-19 infection stratified according to age and risk factors


There is ongoing work within the UK to refine the identification of persons at risk of serious disease and mortality from COVID-19 infection. As well as age and underlying co-morbid conditions, the committee notes that early signals have been identified of other potential risk factors, including deprivation and ethnicity. As more evidence on at-risk groups emerges, this work will inform the review of the composition, and order of priority, of groups for vaccination




Resumption of optical services
This letter from NHSE & NHSI outlines the next steps for delivery of NHS optical services in England as we move into the second phase of the Covid-19 response. Here is the guidance and standard operating procedure for primary care optical settings in the context of Covid-19.



Restart of NHS dental services

Click here for a letter regarding the restart of NHS dental services from Sara Hurley,

Chief Dental Officer for England.



Next phase of  coronavirus (COVID-19) app announced

The government has announced the next phase of development in building an app that supports the end-to-end NHS Test and Trace service. This next phase will bring together the work done so far on the  COVID-19 app and the new Google /Apple framework.

Following rigorous field testing and a trial on the Isle of Wight, challenges have been identified with both the COVID-19 app and the Google /Apple framework. This is a problem that many countries around the world, like Singapore, are facing and in many cases only discovering them after whole population roll-out.
As a result of this work, they will now be taking forward a solution that brings together the work on the COVID-19 app and the Google /Apple solution. This will allow the development of an app that will have the functionality required to carry out contact tracing, but also make it easy to order tests, and access proactive advice and guidance to aid self-isolation.



Update from Macmillan for primary care

Click here for an update from Macmillan. This includes information regarding a new video for people who are shielding, a Covid Hub for professionals and details on a digital summit titled “Unlocking the NHS”.




Cardiology A&G  launched instead of virtual clinics – Frimley North

Click here for an update regarding the commencement of the Cardiology A&G Service from Monday, 22nd June, 2020.  This will mean A&G / virtual clinic advice will not be accepted via the email address: and instead GPs can access the service via eRS. This will bring both secondary sites services in line.




Virtual safe havens – South only

Surrey and Borders Partnership have launched virtual mental health crisis service to support people during Covid-19. Click here for more details.




Ultrasound appointments – South only

All Ultrasound Appointments for Royal Surrey Hospital, Cranleigh Village Hospital and Haslemere District Hospital are made via the appointments team at RSCH on 01483 464150. Patients should not contact the appointment line themselves. Click here for more details.






Covid-19 sit rep FHFT (18/6/20)

  • Number of inpatients diagnosed with Covid-19 in last 24 hours – 1
  • Number of confirmed Covid-19 patients on mechanical ventilation at 0800 – 0
  • Number of suspected Covid-19 patients on mechanical ventilation at 0800 – 0
  • Number of confirmed Covid-19 patients receiving oxygen at 0800 – 3
  • Number of suspected Covid-19 patients receiving oxygen at 0800 – 6
  • The number of Covid-19 related absences of staff, either through sickness or self-isolation – 277


Frimley Collaborative CV19 Care Home Response Offer

The Collaborative has made an offer of funding to PCN Clinical Directors for the Covid-19 care home response. The offer is £10 per bed per month from June to September (four months, until commencement of the DES specification), for all homes not already receiving LCS funding for a similar level of support.


The offer recognises the additional work involved in the recent requirements of the NHSE response to enhanced support to care homes. The funding is for the PCN to provide clinical leadership for the primary care and community health services support to care homes, and for the coordination of the service provision to care home residents, set out in the NHSE Letter on 1st May.


Flexibility on the investment of these funds to deliver the above remains within the PCN, but we have encouraged them to target the resources where they are most needed. Particular areas of need we have identified include learning disability homes, homes where patients are registered to more than one practice, and homes which have challenges due to quality or complexity of need.


Local place-based teams will work with PCN Clinical Directors to support development of local care home models as required.

Dates for your diary

  • CRUK webinar on the PCN DES Cancer Early Diagnosis – East Berkshire only. Click here for information on a PCN DES Cancer Early Diagnosis webinar to take place on Thursday, 25th June, 12.30-1.30pm.
  • Talk Cancer live online workshop, Thursday 25th June 10:30am, with Cancer Research UK. Click here to read more about what you’ll learn in the workshop, how it’ll be run and register to join.


If you have any questions relating to any of the material in this email or have any suggestions for how we could improve this, email ​