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Lincolnshire health chiefs say more GP appointments will be held face to face

NHS chiefs say more face-to-face GP appointments will be held following complaints from patients in the area.

Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group has responded to concerns raised by Spalding Guardian readers in recent weeks about the area’s health services.

A 90-year-old patient wrote to the Guardian to highlight fears over the reduction of face-to-face appointments between clinicians and patients.

More appointments will be face to face
More appointments will be face to face

This prompted concerns from readers about telephone consultations.

A CCG spokesman said: “People across Lincolnshire have shown enormous patience and understanding as NHS services have adapted to the demands and restrictions of the Covid pandemic.

“Our GP practices have remained open throughout the pandemic, continue to work unbelievably hard on behalf of patients across the county, and have our full backing.

“As is the case across the country and with all parts of the NHS, GP practices have had to adapt how they work, with greater use of online/video/telephone appointments, however, they continue to see patients face to face when appropriate and two thirds of all GP appointments are face to face.

“There are other sources of help and advice available. Many minor ailments can be treated at home or with the help of your local pharmacy. If your symptoms aren’t getting better or you’re concerned it’s more serious contact NHS 111 online www.111.nhs.uk or telephone 111 to get the help and advice for your urgent care needs 24/7.

“The pandemic has also had a major impact on hospital services and, as a health system, restoring services is an immediate and very high priority for us.

“We are working closely with partners across the local NHS on a number of key areas including elective, cancer, and diagnostic, to implement solutions as quickly as possible to support patients’ access to appointments across the county.”

Concerns about telephone appointments were raised by readers. One wrote on our Facebook page: “Doctors cannot diagnose over the phone it’s ridiculous. My health has massively deteriorated since the initial lockdown.”

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