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Covid-19 Update

January 2021

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Reopening Additional Measures

Dear patients

Following the Prime Minister’s announcement of a new national lockdown, we made the necessary decision close all our clinics again with immediate effect. The new variant of the virus is far more transmissible and is highly prevalent in the community. The safety of our patients, team and the general population is our top priority. This immediate, temporary closure of our clinics for a minimum of 2 weeks (a so called circuit break) was necessary to enable us to take stock, reassess and optimise our procedures in light of the new variant’s characteristics.

Reassuringly, the Covid secure measures we developed after the first lockdown have proven effective up until now in protecting both patients and staff. There has been not a single example of anyone picking up the virus in any of our clinics. We are, however, now in totally new territory with the new variant which is spreading very fast and very easily. It would be negligent of us to rely solely on the measures that have protected us well thus far. As such, our team of consultants and nurses have helped us develop a detailed and rigorous new system of additional procedures to run alongside our existing precautions.

We have added the following measures to our existing Covid secure protocols (full details can be found here)

1. You must travel to and from the clinic in your own transport; public transport should be avoided. Another person can drive you but they must be from your household or support bubble.

2. Prior to attending a treatment appointment you must either:

 Stay at home for 10 days. Feedback so far indicates that most people will be staying at home for the duration of this lockdown anyhow and so we hope this isn’t too arduous.

 Or, if you cannot stay at home (e.g. you are unable to work from home), we need you to get a PCR Covid test. This is to be carried out prior to attending and you must stay at home between the test and your appointment. It is your responsibility to organise the PCR test however we can recommend some providers.

If you are attending for a consultation only the above isn’t required however it is still preferable if you can.

3. All clinical staff will have a lateral flow test before each clinic list starts and will only continue working if this is negative.

4. We will encourage you to attend a remote consultation to reduce patient contact and ensure most patient visits are for active treatment.

We appreciate that these add an extra degree of inconvenience to you however we are absolutely certain that these extra safety measures are vital to protect everyone and not contribute to further community spread of this new variant of the virus. We are confident that with these measures in place, even with the new variant running rampant through society, visits to our clinics will be safe for everyone.

As such, with these measures in place, we plan to reopen services from Monday 18th January. Sadly, we are not yet able to open our Glasgow clinic. We will be contacting all patients who’ve had an appointment cancelled to outline the new measures and, if accepting of them, to rebook their appointments. Patients still with appointments in the diary will also need to confirm acceptance of our new measures.

We will revert to our standard Covid secure measures just as soon as the community transmission rates reduce to safe levels.

We feel strongly that we must all play our small part in the necessary social distancing required to reduce the spread of this new variant of the virus. The urgency and critical nature of the situation across the U.K. is such that we must pull together, however difficult that is, to save lives and protect the NHS from being truly overwhelmed. We have followed and will continue to follow, the government’s advice throughout this pandemic.

We would also like to offer our apologies again to patients whose appointments have been cancelled at very short notice. Your understanding and kindness has been greatly appreciated despite the inevitable disappointment and inconvenience this has caused.

We will be available via telephone and email throughout the lockdown  If you need any advice or support please don’t hesitate to get in touch. We wish everyone a safe passage through the next few difficult weeks and we look forward to seeing you soon.

Best wishes
Dr David West

Medical Director

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