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“What are GP practices actually doing?”

“The GP surgeries need to open back up and start dealing with patients again!”

“Been in hiding for the last 18 months, but managing to keep taking their salary….”

“Emergencies only? Is that code for, ‘I have a tee time at the Old Course in St Andrews’?”

“I am not discussing anything with the reception staff- when did they get their medical degree?”

These are just some of the comments that have been directed at Kirkview Practice in the last few months- comments which have resulted in hurt, frustration and increased stress and pressure in the workplace. We therefore thought it would be useful to highlight what has been happening in the last 18 months since the pandemic began.

Firstly, and most importantly, the practice has NEVER closed. We continued to work our contracted hours, and have done so throughout the periods of lockdown. During the first lockdown in March 2020, we also worked additional bank holidays to assist other services and alleviate pressure including Easter weekend and May bank holidays.

So, the practice isn’t working the way in which we used to. Before, you could call up and arrange a face to face appointment with the clinician and then come in to the surgery to be seen. With lockdown restrictions and social distancing measures, we HAD to adapt our working ways as we could not have people congregating in the waiting room due to the high risk of possible Covid transmission. Following guidance from NHS Scotland and the Scottish Government, Kirkview Practice, along with other practices in the locality have adopted a mixed approach to dealing with patients. This mixed approach involves all patients receiving an initial telephone consultation with one of the clinicians to assess their needs, and a management plan being constructed. If after this assessment a patient needs a face to face assessment, this will be organised. WE ARE NOT REFUSING TO SEE PATIENTS.

Our reception advisers are one of the most important and invaluable teams within the practice. They have undergone extensive training in order to be able to assist patients with their enquiries. It is the role of our reception team to ask specific questions so that they know which clinician is best suited to your needs, and what the appropriate timescale for this should be. IT IS NOT A CASE OF REFUSAL. These questions are necessary as they shape your ongoing management for your medical issue. Our reception advisers have been subjected to an unprecedented amount of verbal abuse both on the telephone, and through social media groups. As a practice, we are appalled by this and wish to state that IT WILL NOT BE TOLERATED. Kirkview Medical Practice operate with a Zero Tolerance Policy- If you are found to be verbally abusing our staff or behaving in an inappropriate manner, you will be removed from our practice list.

Just like the way in which our clinicians are managing patients differently, our reception advisers have had to change their way of working. There has now been an introduction of email communication between the practice and other health professionals, and the emailing of clinical photographs and medical certificates involving our patients, which has increased the workload significantly. When we receive comments like, “Do you just keep the phones off the hook” and, “Are you actually answering the phones or sitting drinking tea, having breaks and laughing?”, it is so disheartening, demoralising and upsetting. Practice staff are like our patients- we are also human. We have personal lives and families, we are dealing with the personal impact of Covid-19 the same as everyone else and have anxiety around attending work in a high-risk area. We are not immune from the challenges our patients face- we are patients too within our respective practices and completely understand your frustrations. We are also not immune to becoming sick, or contracting Covid-19 and we require our designated leave too the same as other working people, so if we advise that we are working with a reduced staffing capacity, we would like you to understand that we are doing everything we can to ensure we are offering the best service that we can, with the resources at our disposal.

Over the last 18 months, Kirkview Practice has carried out the following:

- 37,347 telephone consultation appointments 
- 14,411 face to face appointments in the practice 
- 411 new baby check appointments in the practice 
- 1341 home visits to our vulnerable, elderly population
- We have continued to support our assigned Care Home, carrying out weekly telephone clinics and visits 
- Our GPs volunteered for shifts at the Covid-19 Assessment Centre, but as of 6th Sept 2021, all patients with Suspected Covid-19 are being managed in practice 
- Clinicians participated in the flu vaccination campaign in 2020, and in 2021 we immunised all patients aged 80+ in the practice with both Covid-19 vaccinations

We are so proud of how our practice staff have risen to the challenge during this unprecedented time, and wish to thank you for your ongoing help and support. However, we would ask that you be respectful when contacting the practice. We will do our upmost to help you- verbal abuse does not help the situation at all so please, bear in mind that we are here for you, so as a mutual respect, please be here for us and assist our staff when calling the practice.

Please see the handy guide below which gives you more information on the way in which GP practices are now working. 

Thank you from the Kirkview Team


NEW: Covid-19 Assessment & Treatment Pathway

If you have symptoms of Covid-19 including any new continuous cough, fever or loss of smell or taste, please arrange to have a PCR test via the NHS Inform website, or by calling 119 if you cannot book a test online. PLEASE DO NOT CALL THE COVID ASSESSMENT LINE ON 111.

If you require medical advice or assistance for your symptoms, please call the practice on 01355 575630 and speak with one of our reception advisers who will assist you. Please advise the person you speak with of any test result, so that this can be passed over to the clinician. You will then be offered a telephone consultation to discuss your symptoms and concerns, before a clinical management plan is made. 

Social Distancing Measures 

Please be advised that due to Scottish Government Guidelines, Kirkview Practice like all other colleagues in the Health & Social Care settings across NHS Lanarkshire, are still required to maintain Social Distancing measures, and encourage the use of face coverings. Please DO NOT attend the surgery, unless you have a pre-arranged/pre-booked face to face appointment. Please continue to call our reception team on 01355 575630 with your appointment requests and enquiries.

Thank you for your ongoing support during this ever changing time. 

(Site updated 30/09/2021)

Contact Details

Kirkview Medical Practice

Contact Telephone

01355 575630
01698 753 976
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