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Welcome to our Practice 


How to book an appointment with your doctor from Mon 6th NOVEMBER 2017

From Monday 6th November, we will be improving our appointments system and how you book an appointment to see your GP.

Latest News

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Carer’s café

Get support   share information    Relax

The Kings Arms, 20 market Place, Melksham

1st Thursday of every month

10.30am – 12.00pm

For anyone aged 18 or over who help another person in their day to day life, usually a relative or friend, who could not manage without that support

For more information, please contact Carers Support Wiltshire on Freephone 0800 181 4118 or email

Or you can visit



Practice newsletter - December 2017

please click here


Could you be a LINK?  Co-ordinator

People in the community need help to get to hospital or their GP surgery.

BUT they need transport. Melksham Link can provide transport BUT we need volunteers to arrange it.

You would take the phone messages, arrange a driver answer the caller know what time the driver will collect them. You could do one week at a time, probably every four weeks, or you might do 2 or 3 regularly per month.   A mobile phone is provided & is handed over along with the paperwork to whoever is next on duty

 Phone or email for more details

07979 129052



Appointments & prescriptions information over the

Christmas Period 2017 


During the Christmas period all Practice sites will be closed on National Bank Holidays.


This year, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day land on a Monday  the Surgery will be closed  is closed -  Bank Holidays will be as follows: 


Monday 25th December (Xmas Day)

Tuesday 26th December (Boxing Day)

Monday 1st January ( New Years Day) 


If you have a medical emergency when the Surgery is closed please telephone the Out of Hours service on 111.


Repeat Prescriptions


Repeat prescription requests usually take 48 hours to be processed by the Surgery.


During December the number of repeat prescription requests increase across the 4 Practice sites from approx. 562 requests per day to 640 requests per day!


Extra staff are put in place to process these additional requests but to enable the Practice to ensure all requests are completed in time for Christmas we ask for repeat prescription requests, which are required before Christmas, are delivered to the Surgery by 12noon, Friday 15th December 2017.


Any requests received on:


18th December— GP signed by 20th Dec


20th December— GP signed by 22nd Dec


27th December— GP signed by 29th Dec


29th December— GP signed by 4th Jan



The repeat prescription service will return to normal for all sites by the 2nd January 2018.


Christmas opening times leaflet & other useful information - to follow



Antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest threats facing us today.

Why it is relevant to you: without effective antibiotics many routine treatments will become increasingly dangerous. Setting broken bones, basic operations, even chemotherapy and animal health all rely on access to antibiotics that work.

What we want you to do: To slow resistance we need to cut the unnecessary use of antibiotics. We invite the public, students and educators, farmers, the veterinary and medical communities and professional organisations, to become Antibiotic Guardians.

For more information please click here


World Antibiotic Awareness Week

Antibiotics are important medicines for treating bacterial infections in both humans and animals. However, bacteria can adapt and find ways to survive the effects of an antibiotic.

This means antibiotics are losing their effectiveness at an increasing rate. The more we use antibiotics, the greater the chance bacteria will become resistant to them and they can no longer be used to treat infections. 

Antibiotic resistance is one of the most significant threats to patients' safety in Europe. It is driven by overusing antibiotics and prescribing them inappropriately. 

To slow down the development of antibiotic resistance, it is important to use antibiotics in the right way – to use the right drug, at the right dose, at the right time, for the right duration. Antibiotics should be taken as prescribed and never saved for later or shared with others.




From Monday 6th November, we will be improving our appointments system and how you book an appointment to see your GP.


“Call First” New telephone system

Call First” is an appointments booking system whereby all patients requesting an appointment speak to a doctor who decides whether their problem can be dealt with by phone or requires a face to face consultation with a doctor or a nurse.

GP’s will telephone the patient at / or as close to possible to the time allocated and after the initial discussion if the doctor is unable to provide care or advice over the phone the patient will be offered an appointment.  The patient will then be booked with a GP or a nurse.  If a patient is required to attend elsewhere for tests, or requires a referral or a prescription, they will be advised by the GP at that time and the necessary arrangements will be made after the call has ended. 

What are the benefits?

  • Speak to a GP sooner
  • See their GP sooner when appropriate
  • Increase number of patients dealt with daily
  • Save time by avoiding unnecessary appointments.  

For more information please click the following links:


Patients FAQ fact sheet 


Accessing Appropriate Healthcare


BOA & Winsley Health Centre Appointments leaflet


St Damian's Surgery Appointments leaflet





Keep a well-stocked medicine cabinet at home this winter recommends NHS Wiltshire CCG


Wiltshire Clinical Commissioning Group is advising local residents to be prepared this winter with their own well-stocked medicine cabinet, so they can treat themselves at the first signs of coughs, colds, sore throats or stomach bugs.


What to keep in your medicine cabinet


  • Painkillers– Aspirin, paracetamol and ibuprofen are highly effective at relieving most minor aches, pains, coughs and cold
  • Oral rehydration salts– can help restore your body’s natural balance of minerals and fluid lost through diarrhoea, fever, vomiting – if you can’t continue your normal diet
  • Anti-diarrhoea tablets– it’s a good idea to keep anti-diarrhoea medicine at home as diarrhoea can happen without warning. Causes include food poisoning and a stomach virus
  • Antihistamines– Useful for dealing with allergies, insect bites and hay fever
  • Indigestion treatment– If you have stomach ache, heartburn or trapped wind, a simple antacid will reduce stomach acidity and bring relief
  • Suncream– Sunburn can happen at any time of year, so keep some suncream of at least factor 15, with UVA protection. Exposure to the sun can cause sunburn and increase your risk of cancer




Why have I been referred?


Your GP will discuss with you and, if appropriate, your carer, about why a referral is being recommended. It is usually because your GP wants a specialist’s help in deciding on the best way to treat your condition.

For more information please click here



Shortage of Pneumococcal polysaccharide vaccine


There is a current shortage of the PPV23 vaccine which is likely to continue for the foreseeable future. There is only one licensed vaccine available and although the company are expecting more stock deliveries during October, the volume anticipated is unlikely to be sufficient to vaccinate the whole 65 year old cohort this winter.


The vaccine covers the 23 most common serotypes of Streptococcus pneumoniae (the pneumococcus) that are responsible for a range of diseases including meningitis, septicaemia and pneumonia.


Pneumococcal infection occurs in the extremes of age with the highest incidence in infants and the elderly, particularly those over the age of 75 years.


For those at high risk, it is important to ensure that other preventive measures, including influenza vaccination, are implemented ,We will flag such patients so that they can be called for vaccine once the stock situation improves. There are no major concerns about deferring vaccination in over 65 year olds for several months or until next year.



 Dr Nell Wyatt - Clipper Round the world update


For more information please click here



Stoptober – the 28-day quit smoking campaign – is back.

Stoptober has driven over 1 million quit attempts to date and is the biggest mass quit attempt in the country. If you can make it to 28 days smokefree, you’re 5 times more likely to stay quit for good.

Stoptober offers a range of free support to help you including an app, daily emails, Facebook Messenger and lots of encouragement from the Stoptober online community on Facebook. In addition, you can get expert face-to-face advice from local stop smoking services. Those who use stop smoking aids and who get face-to-face support from their local stop smoking service are up to four times more likely to quit successfully.

Visit the Stoptober website to find out more


The Breast Centre provides routine breast screening to all women aged 50-70 who are registered with a GP in the area.

All appointment booking & queries are dealt with at Great Western Hospital please call 01793 604036

They are also part of the age expansion trial - offering some appointments to women aged 47-74.

They also run a symptomatic service for women and men who are referred by their GP.


  • Great Western Hospital - ground floor
  • Two mobile units travel to various sites in Wiltshire

Please click here for more information


Melksham Falls & Balance class Every Thursday    

                Spencer Sports & Social Club Beanacre Rd, Melksham

2:45 pm– 3:45 pm

Classes are specially designed to help people who have concerns regarding their balance, have had a fall or who are afraid they may fall. The class involves a variety of standing exercises supported by a chair which improve strength and balance and help participants to increase their confidence.

£3.00 per session

Starting this Thursday the fabulous falls and balance exercise class hosted by Claire Webber will be coming to Melksham Leg & well-being clinic at The Spencers Club. We run this class at Boa and it is very popular with an approx. 50 people attending per week!



Flu vaccination appointments - stocks are running low!

Winter Flu Campaign 2017



Flu vaccination is available every year on the NHS to help protect adults and children at risk of flu and its complications. 

Drop-in flu clinics will be held  on Saturday’s.  If you are unable to attend at these times we can make alternative arrangements at a later date.


All about flu and how to stop getting it

NHS Public Health England - Who should have it and why leaflet please click here

Please click here to download the 2017 Practice Information leaflet 

Easy read version for people with learning disabilities click here

What is flu?

Influenza or flu is a viral infection that usually strikes between December and March. It can affect people of all ages.

You can catch flu by inhaling the virus or by handling items touched by an infected person. The symptoms start to develop one to four days later.



Check below:


If you are in any of the following categories:

  • Everyone aged 65 and over
  • Everyone under 65 years of age who has the following medical condition including children and babies over 6 months: a heart problem, a chest complaint or breathing difficulties including bronchitis, emphysema or severe asthma, kidney disease, lowered immunity due to disease or treatment (such as steriod medication or cancer treatment) liver disease, stroke or TIA, Diabetes, neurological conditions eg MS, Cerebral palsy or learning disability, problem with spleen including removal or sickle cell disease, BMI of 40 and over.
  • Pregnant women at any stage of pregnancy
  • Living in a residential home or nursing home
  • Carer for an older or disabled person
  • Household contacts of anyone who is immunocompromised
  • Frontline social and healthcare workers
  • All 2 and 3 year olds born between 1.9.2013 and 31.8.2015)

This year all Reception and school years 1,2,3 and 4 throughout England will be offered the flu vaccine in School (ie born between 1.9.2008 and 31.8.2013)

For more information please click here



Eligibility for the shingles vaccine:

AGE: The age you will be on the 1st September 2016


Dates of Birth


Are You eligible Yes/No


On or after 2 September 1946



Between 2nd September 1945 and 1st September 1946

Yes √


Between 2nd September 1944 and 1 September 1945

Yes √


Between 2nd September 1943 and 1st September 1944

Yes √

74 to 77

Between 2nd September 1939 and 1st September 1942

No  X


Between 2nd September 1937 and 1st September 1938

Yes √


Between 2nd September 1936 and 1st September 1937

Yes √

80 or over

Born on or before 1st September 1936

No  X


Victim Support - Not ready to go to the police?

If you have been a victim of any crime or have been affected by a crime committed against someone you know, we can give emotional and practice support to help you find the strength to deal with what you have through.

For more information contact 0808 281 0113 or email



 Ear Wax Prevention

What can I do to prevent earwax build up?


If you are prone to lots of earwax it will help to regularly use ear drops to prevent build up.

There are various options including olive oil, almond oil and sodium bicarbonate drops. These are all found in your local chemist. Evidence shows that these options are equally effective so it’s important to find what works for you.

Everyone’s ears are different and will need a different frequency but in general to pre-vent build up of ear wax drops should be applied on a regular basis throughout the year.

An ear syringe should ONLY be performed if absolutely necessary and only after the     self-treatment plan below has been followed:


  • READ: Ear Wax Prevention & Treatment Leaflet
  • ENSURE: Ears are oiled for at least 14 days
  • USE: A bulb syringe, which can be bought from most Pharmacies and online (see leaflet for more details)
  • ONLY THEN: Can an appointment be made in the ‘ear check clinic’ (if all of the above has been done and there is no improvement

Please click here for Practice in-house leaflet

click here for additional fact sheet



2017 - Surgery receives Gold Award

Since 2011 the Surgery has been working closely with Carer Support Wiltshire & Wiltshire Council to help raise awareness of Carers and to create a new Wiltshire Investors in Carers Award. We believe that supporting Carers is an important part of general medical services as Carers are three times more likely to suffer ill health compared to non-carers.

This is a wonderful achievement for the practice, a huge well done to Hayley Holland (Carers Representative) and the team who provide the carers health checks.  



Men ACWY vaccine

Teenagers and "fresher" students going to university for the first time are advised to have a vaccination to prevent meningitis and septicaemia, which can be deadly.

Please click here for more information




 The Surgery would like to welcome Dr Bronte Vidni & Dr Rebecca Atkinson to the Practice team




                      Healthy Me - a fun approach to wellbeing


Fun sessions designed to help young people and their families adopt healthier lifestyles which become lifelong habits are beginning in Wiltshire this September.
Healthy Me is a 10 week programme for children aged seven to 11 years who may be less active than recommended and above their healthy weight range. 

Young people and their families can attend the ten 90-minute sessions based in health and wellbeing centres and leisure centres across the county to find out about nutrition, food groups, portion sizes, food labelling, physical activity and making healthier choices a habit.

For more information please click here



Dr Brian Devlin has joined the Practice as one of our new locums


Dr Devlin qualified in his home town of Glasgow in 2001 and completed GP training there in 2008, after a spell working in Australia. He then completed a Diploma in Tropical Medicine & Hygiene at the London School of Hygiene, which was put to good use working in a village health clinic in Ghana for 6 months. 

After several years based between a practice in Hackney and a specialist addictions clinic in Islington, he is very happy to have moved to Somerset earlier this year with his wife and 2 young children. His years spent abroad and south of the border have softened his Glaswegian accent enough for it to be intelligible to most people nowadays.

Favorite non-work activities include time with friends and family, 5-a-side football, films, travel and photography. 



Young People Friendly Award

Public Health have awarded the Practice with the national quality mark for Young People Friendly.

Huge congratulations to Kirsty Tripp, our Young People Friendly Representative, for achieving this award and for all those that helped Kirsty with this project.


The assessors were pleased to see that the Practice is making every effort to ensure young people receive an accessible and supportive service.


For more details on the services we offer, please refer to our Young People Friendly Practice leaflet or ask for Kirsty at reception!




 Dr Nell Wyatt - Sabbatical News

The Practice would like to announce that Dr Nell Wyatt will be taking a years’ sabbatical from early August 2017 to take part as Crew Member and boat Medic in the Round the World Clipper Race.

The Race starts on August 20th 2017 setting sail from Liverpool and whilst sailing 40,000 miles across all the major oceans of the world, Dr Wyatt expects to encounter every type of weather and sailing conditions from storms and huge waves to calm seas and (hopefully) a bit of sunshine!  She aims to cross the finish line on 28th July 2018 planning to return to work as full time Partner in Mid-August 2018.  

Whilst Dr Wyatt is away on the high seas, Dr Paul Thorne and Dr Brian Devlin will be looking after her patients giving continuity of care to all her patients including those with Diabetes.


Dr Janice Patrick will be embracing the Research role and the Clinical Research team will remain unchanged.  The practice will continue to actively participate in Clinical Research.


The Partners and staff would like to wish Dr Wyatt a safe adventure and look forward to seeing her back at the Practice in August 2018.



 Important Information About Your Diabetic Eye Screening Programme


Eye screening is a key part of your diabetic care checking for diabetic retinopathy, a condition that can lead to sight loss if it's not detected early and treated. Everyone aged 12 and over with diabetes receives an invitation to this service once a year.

For more information please click here


Melksham Leg & wellbeing club

From Thursday 6th April 2017 all patients registered with a Doctor in Melksham and who would usually attend St Damian’s Surgery for their leg ulcer dressing, will now be able to attend the new weekly Leg & Wellness Club. 

At the Leg & Wellness Club patients will find a friendly,  welcoming atmosphere which     enables patients with lower leg problems to benefit from mutual encouragement, have fun and enjoy refreshments  together in a social setting.

The service is drop-in which means patients do not have to make an             appointment, just come along to be seen by one of leg ulcer team.

For more information please click here


Carers Patient Survey - May 2017


We would be grateful if you would complete the following Carers survey by clicking here.




“All GP practices are required to declare the mean earnings (e.g. average pay) for GPs working to deliver NHS services to patients at each practice.


The average pay for GPs working in Bradford on Avon and Melksham Health Partnership in the last financial year was £56,090 before tax and National Insurance. This is for 4 full time GPs, 8 part time GPs, and no locum GPs who worked in the practice for more than six months.”







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