Covid-19 Update 8th December 2021:
Fast Facts: Covid vaccinations in Doncaster
Briefing issued Friday 3 December 2021
· The Government has recently announced that everyone over the age of 18 will soon be able to get a third or “booster” vaccination against Covid.
· And instead of having to wait 6 months between their second vaccine and their booster dose, people will only have to wait for 3 months (or 91 days).
· This is following advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) to increase protection ahead of any wave of infection and to help reduce the impact of the Omicron variant.
· Therefore, the NHS will offer vaccination in descending age groups, with priority given to the vaccination of older adults and those in a Covid-19 at-risk group first.
· In Doncaster we are getting ready to extend the booster vaccination to everyone over 18 in the next few weeks.
· It is a huge programme, but we are currently working out our delivery plans and will update you as soon as possible.
· The NHS will let you know when it’s your turn for your booster.
· Please do not call your GP surgery asking for a booster before you are eligible.
· Currently people aged 40+ are eligible for a booster vaccination.
· It is offered to those who have already had two doses. At the present time a booster is available no sooner than 6 months after a second dose.
· Eligible people, including those of all ages who are clinically vulnerable, are being called forward for their booster jabs by their GP surgeries.
· Bookings are also being taken through the National Booking Service (which is not run by Doncaster CCG) or by calling 119. If you choose to use these services instead of waiting for an invitation from your GP surgery, the available centres may be further away and may involve travel. Not all local sites in Doncaster can be accessed by this service.
· Some pharmacies commissioned directly by the national NHS are also contacting eligible people by text to invite them for their boosters.
Walk-in vaccination centres in Doncaster:
· We encourage everyone to get vaccinated against Covid-19
· Many people still haven’t had a first or second dose. Our walk-in clinics were set up primarily to offer first and second doses – an offer that remains on the table indefinitely.
· Many people choose to make a booking direct at our walk-in centres when they are invited by their practices, including many who are eligible for a booster.
· Our walk-in centres are currently at Lakeside Shopping Village and Rutland House. Details of walk-in times and dates can be found on the CCG website: Get vaccinated at one of our drop-in clinics – Doncaster CCG
· We welcome people who haven’t booked but, if you make the choice to ‘walk in’ without an appointment we stress: you must be eligible or you may be turned away; you must be prepared to wait as walk-ins are proving very popular and can get very busy; we may not have adequate supplies towards the end of a day and the clinic may close earlier than advertised as a result
· Staff at the walk-in centres will keep people informed how long they may have to wait
· We ask that people are patient and polite at our walk-ins. The staff there are working hard to deliver as many vaccines as possible, but they need to take comfort and refreshment breaks.
Our next Fast Facts update bulletin will be issued on Wednesday 8 December
In the meantime, if you have any questions, please send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org and keep up to date by visiting Covid-19 Vaccination Programme – Doncaster CCG
Ear Care Services
Ear syringing at Tickhill & Colliery Medical Practice
We have had to make the hard decision to stop providing an ear syringing service at the practice from 1st November 2021.
Unfortunately this is a service that is no longer subsidised by the NHS and so we no longer have the funding or the resources to undertake this work. In addition we are faced with a huge increase in the demand for clinical time and medical services in other areas, and so we no longer have the capacity to be able to offer this service in the practice.
Ear syringing has been withdrawn by most other GP practices in England for some time for the same reasons.’
What we can do is encourage self-care for patients; there is evidence that oiling, and also self-irrigation, can work well for a significant number of patients (approx. 50% reduction in the need for appointments).
Please note – We will never refuse appointments for those who have ear pain
Please do not attempt to self – treat if any of the following apply to you:
- Pain in the ear
- A history of ear drum perforation in the affected ear
- A recent history of an ear infection in the affected ear
- Symptoms of infection in the ear – usually pain or a smelly discharge
- If you have an offensive discharge or bleeding from the ear (this may mean you have an ear infection)
- If you only have one hearing ear which is the affected ear
Previous ear surgery on the affected ear
- Sudden deafness or buzzing
- Foreign bodies in the ear
If you experience any of the above, you should seek advice from your GP or Nurse Practitioner at the surgery.
Ear Syringing/Ear Care
If there is a build up of wax in your ear(s) please read the following self-help guide.
What is ear wax?
Ear wax is normal and is produced to form a protective coating over the skin in the ear canal. Ears are normally self-cleaning – the movement of your jaw whilst eating and talking helps to move the wax along the canal where it will usually fall out naturally without you noticing.
Why is my ear blocked with wax?
The amount of ear wax produced varies from person to person; some people produce excessive amounts which can lead to a blockage in the ear canal.
You are more likely to develop a blockage of wax in the canal if you:
- use cotton ear buds to clean the ear as this pushes the wax deeper into the canal
- wear a hearing aid, ear plugs or use in-ear speakers for i-pods or similar – as these can all interfere with the natural process of wax expulsion
- have abnormally narrow ear canals
- have a particularly hairy ear canal
- are elderly – because the ear wax you produce is drier and harder
- have a dry skin problem such as eczema or psoriasis.
Advice to help you manage and prevent ear wax blockage
Ear wax only becomes a problem if it causes deafness, discomfort or if your Health professional requires a clear view or your ear drum.
Olive Oil Drops –
The following needs to be done 2-3 times daily for 14 days.
- Lie on your side with the affected ear uppermost
- Pull the outer ear gently backwards and upwards to straighten the ear canal
- Put 2-3 drops of olive oil into the affected ear(s) and gently massage just in front of the ear
- Stay laying on your side to allow the wax to soak in for around 15 mins
- Afterwards, wipe away any excess oil but do not plug your ear with cotton wool as this simply absorbs the oil
Your hearing problem may initially worsen after first starting to use the olive oil drops; this is why we advise you to concentrate on treating one ear at a time if both ears are blocked with wax.
In most cases, after 14 days, the wax will have softened sufficiently to encourage the wax to come out without further intervention.
Should I use cotton buds in my ears?
Never use cotton buds in your ears! This pushes the wax further into the ear making it worse. It can also cause ear infections and damage the ear drum.
Ear syringing is only usually considered if the above recommendations have proved to be unsuccessful. Ear wax needs to be softened as above for 14 days before attempting to syringe. Although the risks are low, there is a small chance (thought to be around 1 in 1000) of complications occurring with ear syringing- such as a perforated ear drum, middle ear infection, external canal infection or causing ringing in the ear (tinnitus).
If your ears are regularly becoming blocked with wax, after clearing the blockage we will usually suggest you use olive oil drops as above around once per week to keep the wax soft and encourage the natural process of wax expulsion.
Bulb syringes – What is a bulb syringe and where can I get one?
A bulb syringe is a small bulb shaped rubber object that will fill with water and allow the user to squirt the water gently into the ear to remove earwax. You can buy it from most pharmacies or online. It costs around £3 to £4.
Alternatively, there are now over-the-counter kits available from pharmacies. These contain a wax softener which you use for 3-4 days and a small bulb syringe to enable you to remove the wax from your ear canals yourself. One such kit is called Otex Express Combi Pack (costs approx £7.95). We do not advise you use this type of preparation to soften wax before having your ears syringed as longer term use can cause irritation and soreness to your ears. You may also see syringe kits specifically designed for ears (that direct the water to the sides of the ear rather than towards the drum).
An ear bulb syringe should be used when one or both ears are blocked with wax. This is called wax impaction. The ears are usually self-cleaning as the skin cells of the ear drum and ear canal are constantly migrating outwards and most people do not need to interfere with their ears at all. Some people make more wax, or their ears do not clean the wax as effectively as others. In these cases wax can build up inside the ear sometimes causing a blockage sensation and
A study on the use of the bulb syringe showed that half of patients who use it are successfully treated.
Is it safe and what are the risks of using a bulb syringe?
The use of the bulb syringe is commonly used in the USA or Europe. Two studies have shown the bulb syringe to be a safe treatment. The risks of using the bulb syringe include ear infection, failure to remove the wax and eardrum perforation. These risks are low.
What if my ears are still blocked after using the bulb syringe?
The procedure can be repeated but if it fails you may need to try ear syringing. If this fails you may be referred for micro suction.
What are the benefits of the bulb syringe?
The main benefit of the bulb syringe is that you can use it yourself, it is cheap to buy and can be re-used.
How do I use the bulb syringe?
The bulb syringe will most likely come with instructions but below is some advice on how to use the bulb syringe (you may need a family member to help you but it really is very simple):
1.Firstly, use olive oil or sodium bicarbonate eardrops in the ear daily for 2-3 weeks. Apply a generous amount twice daily into the ear leaving he ear uppermost for 5-10 minutes after applying. If this does not clear the wax then the bulb syringe can be used.
2.Put some clean warm (not hot) water in a bowl. Squirt the bulb syringe in the water a few times to fill it up with warm water.
3.Hold your head to one side so the affected ear is facing upwards. You can do this in the shower or bath or lie on the bed with a towel underneath your head.
4.If you experience any pain during or before this procedure stop immediately and see a practice nurse or GP for a review.
5.Gently pull your ear in an upwards and outwards direction so that the water gets better access to the ear canal. Hold the nozzle inside the ear (not too deeply) and GENTLY squirt the water from the bulb syringe into the ear. You can gently squirt more bulb syringes into the ear if require. Leave the water in your ear for 1-3 minutes to soften the wax.
6.Now tilt your head over so the water can fall out. Wiggle the outer part of the ear to help the water and wax come out. You can repeat the procedure if required.
7.Repeat for the other ear if both ears are affected.
8.If you get any pain or if the procedure is unsuccessful, see a practice nurse or GP.
Do I have to treat ear wax impaction (blocked ears from wax)?
No. If your ears being blocked with wax does not particularly trouble you, then you do not have to treat it. You can use olive oil or sodium bicarbonate drops daily and this will help the ears clean themselves. You can get these drops over the counter in any pharmacy.
There are some local options for having ear syringing done privately.
Your GP practice is open and if you need to see your GP, please ring us on 01302 742503 (Tickhill Surgery) or 01302 986666 (Colliery Surgery), we are still working from a triage system, however, face-to-face appointments ARE available where clinically indicated.
You can also call NHS 111.
If you are waiting for a check-up, please be assured that we will be in touch.
Appointments are being delivered face-to-face, online and over the telephone. If you are coming into the surgery for a face-to-face appointment, please remember to wear a face covering and abide by social distancing measures. Measures are in place to keep you safe from infection during your visit to the surgery.
WHEN THE SURGERY IS CLOSED
When we are closed, you can still contact the surgery and you will be redirected to the Out Of Hours GP Service. If you are not connected, it will be due to the lines being busy so please try again until you are connected to the call handler.
From Monday (July 19th) some of the COVID-19 restrictions will be eased as England moves to the next stage of the government’s roadmap.
As exciting as it may be to think about a life without restrictions, it is important to recognise that the virus is circulating in very high numbers in our community.
We have a number of vulnerable and unvaccinated patients and intend to continue with the same approach to face mask use in the health centre.
We request that all visitors and staff in the health centre continue to wear a face mask unless medically exempt. This is in line with Public Health England guidance for hospitals and primary care settings. Thank you.
The COVID-19 Vaccination programme is well underway across the whole of the UK.
The Community vaccine is being administered at hubs for a network of GP practices. For our patients, the vaccine is being administered at the Dearne Valley Leisure Centre.
The Practice has a strict protocol to follow which is set by NHS England and the rules are being followed by all vaccine centres up and down the country. Patients are being called in a pre-set order of priority, further details can be found on the government website or you can visit our Facebook page for updates on drop in clinics.
You may find it helpful to read more information about the Doncaster vaccination programme rollout and FAQs on the NHS Doncaster CCG website: https://www.doncasterccg.nhs.uk/your-care/coronavirus-latest-news-and-information/covid-19-vaccine/
Thank you all for your patience and understanding whilst our staff work hard to ensure the vaccination programme rollout is a success across the Doncaster South Primary Care Network.
COVID-19 VACCINE SCAM ALERT - If you receive a message from, what looks like, the NHS, but it is asking for your bank details or requests payment to book a COVID vaccine – THIS IS A SCAM. When you are eligible for your vaccine you will be contacted directly by your GP Practice for your FREE COVID vaccine appointment.
Do you have a non-urgent or admin request for the practice? Would it be easier for you to submit this remotely/ via text, rather than telephoning?
We have now gone live with a new online consultation service - Accurx Patient Triage.
This is a great way for you to contact our practice for non-urgent medical or admin requests.
To use this, please follow the link below:
Thank you for visiting the website of the Tickhill and Colliery Medical Practice. This website is intended as a source of information for patients.
We are a semi rural practice operating from two surgeries, 3 miles apart, both of which are fully equipped and patients attend one or the other surgery. The majority, 6000 patients are registered at Tickhill and approximately 3200 from Bircotes / Harworth and the surrounding villages.
Tickhill is a prosperous semi rural community with some strong local farming roots. Bircotes and Harworth are mining villages, with some areas of deprivation following the closure of the local Colliery and other small manufacturing sites.
The practice has a GMS contract and is a high achiever of QOF points.
The practice operates a ZERO tolerance policy, our staff are here to help and not to be abused this will NOT under any circumstances be accepted and appropriate action would be considered and if necessary implemented.
(Site updated 08/12/2021)