Patients urged to take care of health issues during lockdown

Raglan Medical doctors are urging people to stay well and keep on top of their health issues during the lockdown.

And it’s a message being repeated by Director-General of Heatlh Dr Ashley Bloomfield, who is asking people to continue to access health care services when they need them, especially if they need urgent attention.

Dr Mike Loten says staff at Raglan Medical are just a phone call away and in most cases a visit to the centre is not necessary.

“Everything is done by phone first but when we decide that someone is unwell enough to be seen, we will see them.”

Loten says it’s vital vulnerable people in the community, such as the elderly and those with chronic health issues, make contact with Raglan Medical as soon as they are feeling unwell.

“What we don’t want is people avoiding coming to see us.”

If, after an initial phone consult, a patient is asked to visit the centre there is a strict social distancing regime in place and this is also being adhered to by staff.

“At all of our staff meetings we are social distancing, keeping two-metres apart. We try to keep to ourselves as much as possible and in our tea room we have a rule that we only have two people are allowed in at once,” Loten says.

Prior to lockdown the GP College sent an urgent message to general practices around the country to reduce face-to-face consultations by 70 per cent and Loten says a plan was put in place at Raglan Medical to ensure the safety of the staff and the wider community.

“It’s important for people to realise we are a very low risk environment for catching Covid-19. We haven’t had any cases. We are very careful if anyone is infectious to isolate them from the rest of the building.”

Like many practices around the country, Raglan Medical has had a significant drop-off in numbers and during quiet times staff are being sent home or are working from home.

However, Loten says all the centre’s doctors are still working during the lockdown and they have only had to cancel a locum who was coming in to do maternity cover.

“It’s the same message that we always give; if it’s an emergency you’re going to see the doctor that’s available that day. For non-urgent stuff you will be able to book your preferred doctor as long as you give us enough notice.”

Janine jackson

To contact Raglan Medical phone 07-825 0114, the centre is open Monday to Friday 8am – 5pm.