Patient Notice: Staff Changes at Merrow Park Surgery

We would like to take this opportunity to announce some changes to Merrow Park Surgery which will take effect from 1 July 2021.

Dr Smee, Dr Humphreys and Dr Welch will be leaving the practice to pursue other opportunities and roles within primary care. We would like to wish them all the best for the future and thank them for all the care, diligence and dedication they have given to colleagues, patients and staff over the years. As part of this change, we welcome Dr Vicky Farrow who will be joining Dr Calvert Han, Dr Larisa Han and Dr Sarah Quick at Merrow Park Surgery. Dr Farrow brings a wealth of experience and has a particular interest in Womens’s Health, Lifestyle Medicine and is keen to develop these further at the practice.

In addition, we will be expanding the team in recruiting several salaried GPs to ensure we have a team of clinical, administrative and management staff that can meet all our patients’ needs as we continue to improve the health and wellbeing of the Merrow and Burpham population. We are pleased to announce we have recruited Dr Jessica Thiele and Dr Melody Vincett who will be joining us in August.

Therefore, we would like to reassure our patients that despite a number of changes this will not impact the access to the high-quality level of care that we provide at Merrow Park Surgery. If you would like to discuss further, please email: syheartlandsccg.primarycareliaisongwicp@nhs.net.

Frequently Asked Questions: Merrow Park Surgery July 2021

Will there be reduced availability of appointments from 1 July? ​

No, we have new doctors joining us to enable us to maintain the same level of appointments. Some will join us in August and so we will continue to have experienced locum GPs at the practice, as we have done over the past few months when they covered  GP sick leave and annual leave.

Will the newly appointed doctors know about my health conditions and clinical needs? ​

Any clinician working from our practice can securely access our clinical system and your full GP record. When consulting with any clinician with whom you are initially unfamiliar, it is best to mention anything that you think may be relevant. Continuity of care is part of the core principle of good general practice, so as time goes on, this will develop with your new doctor.

What happens if I do not want to be seen by a specific GP –
can I see another Doctor instead?

​We will continue to offer a variety of appointments with different health care professionals (specialist paramedics and a physician associate as well as GPs). On any given day there is normally a choice of telephone, face-to-face appointments as well as e-mail slots for each clinician and we will discuss with you the most appropriate appointment type to deal with the health issue you have.

I am receiving palliative care and have regular appointments with my GP, who is leaving the practice –
will there be a handover of notes and details to the new GP?

We will continue to have regular meetings with the whole palliative care team (Community District Nurses, the Community Matron and Macmillan Nursing Team). The doctors who are leaving will be liaising closely with the remaining doctors (Dr Calvert Han, Dr Larisa Han and Dr Sarah Quick, as well as Dr Vicky Farrow who is joining us) to ensure a smooth handover of care. This will also be the case for patients with complex care needs.

What will happen when I need to seek medical advice once my GP has left?

We will continue to provide the same level of care, prioritising the areas of clinical needs. Any on-the-day/urgent advice is dealt with by the on-call doctor. More routine queries can be submitted through the practice website or telephone, allowing our patient services team to offer you contact with the most appropriate member of our clinical team.

I would like to thank the staff who are leaving –
how can I do that?

We have set up an on-line leaving book, for patients to express their thanks and comments to Dr Smee, Dr Humphreys and Dr Welch. We have all valued the time and contribution they have made to the practice and these comments will be added to our own as we wish the best for their continued medical careers and opportunities

Do the new GPs have particular specialisms and clinical interests in addition to the remaining GPs?

​Dr Vicky Farrow has an interest in women’s health and lifestyle medicine. Dr Larisa Han has an interest in dermatology. Dr Calvert Han has an interest in diabetes. Dr Sarah Quick has an interest in Cancer management and veterans’ health. Other doctors joining us are looking forward to developing areas of clinical interest together with the rest of our clinical team.

Do the changes have an impact on the Practice and what services it can offer patients?

The only service we will not continue at the practice initially will be minor surgery (removal of benign lumps and bumps). This is an optional service for General Practice and there is already a buddy-service with another local practice for the small number of cases suitable for primary care. Joint injections and cryotherapy will continue as before

How will the practice deal with the extra demands being placed upon primary care
post-Covid and alongside these additional changes? ​

These are challenging times to provide health care but during the pandemic lockdown we have continued to provide face-to face consultations and home visits based on clinical need. We have embraced the opportunity for remote consultations and electronic communications: our overall patient and clinical contacts have seen a 33% rise compared to 2019. Our aim is to continue to provide and adapt to the changing healthcare landscape with our clinical, admin and management teams.

Will there be a long wait to get a GP appointment?

In March 2019 a patient could experience a longer wait for a face-to-face appointment.  Due to changes made in April/May 2020 at our Practice, subsequent reviews and changes due to the Covid- 19 pandemic access and availability to services have increased.  An online request from a patient to a GP is responded to within 1-2 working days and in many cases resolved on the same day.  A patient wishing to speak with a GP can now get a telephone call within 1-2 weeks and are then seen that day or at an alternative suitable time if the patient needs to be seen.