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COVID-19 Vaccination Programme

People most at risk from the complications of COVID-19 are being offered the vaccine first.

In the UK, there are 2 types of COVID-19 vaccine to be used once they are approved. They both require 2 doses to provide the best protection. Both have been shown to be safe and effective in clinical trials.

An independent group of experts has recommended that the NHS first offers these vaccines to those at highest risk of catching the disease and of suffering serious complications or dying from COVID-19. This includes older adults in care homes and frontline health and social care workers.

We are currently delivering the covid vaccination programme in collaboration with other GP practices within our region via a central location.  All patients identified in line with Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) guidance will be offered an appointment, a member of the practice team will be contacting you over the coming weeks to offer you an appointment.

When more vaccine becomes available, the vaccines will be offered to other people at risk as soon as possible. Please wait for us to contact you about the vaccine. If you choose not to wait and you are offered an appointment to attend one of the Vaccination Centre's please do so.

For further information please access the leaflet via the link below.

Flu vaccination #ProtectYourself and #DoYourBit

It’s never been more important to have your flu vaccination, remember flu kills. Don’t take the risk.                                                    

If you are eligible e.g. COPD, chronic kidney disease, chronic liver disease, chronic heart disease, chronic neurological disease, diabetic, immunosupressed, pregnant, carer, BMI>40 and have not yet received or booked an appointment to receive the flu vaccination please ring 01740 620300 or 01429 880284 (option 1).

More appointments have been created including early morning and late afternoon and evening.

We are now able to offer appointments for flu vaccination to any patient in the 50-64 year old age group, please contact us for an appointment.

Remember to wear a face covering when attending the surgery for all appointments, thank you.

Important! Please Read our Practice   Face Covering guidance

We are now in the delay phase of our response to COVID-19. This entails significant changes to how we identify and manage potential cases of COVID-19.

  • 1. From today the public are being advised to stay at home (self-isolate) without any testing for COVID-19, regardless of travel history or contact with confirmed cases, if they have:
  • a. A new continuous cough OR
  • b. High temperature (of 37.8 degrees centigrade or higher)
  • 2. The geographic element of the case definition has now been removed. Travel and contact history are no longer important for diagnosis, which is on the basis of symptoms alone. If people who have travelled do not have symptoms they do not need to stay at home, regardless of their travel history.

Individuals should stay at home (self-isolate) for 14 days, along with all household members from the onset of symptoms, please follow online NHS advice for further information on isolation.

If more serious symptoms develop that you cannot manage at home you should firstly use NHS 111 online. People should only call NHS 111 if they cannot use the online 111 tool.


Please do not call the GP surgery unless you need to.

To assist in being able to distribute calls more evenly we are in the process of changing the phone options as follows:

  • Press 1 to speak to a receptionist for appointments, prescription requests, blood results
  • Press 2 to speak to a secretary

You will notice we are facing extremely high demand and you may be held in a queue for longer than you expect. Please use NHS 111 online to try to self manage first, you can even try our e-consult facility. Why don't you register to use the online options to make telephone appointments and order your medications, this is an extremely efficient and time saving process, please see more information in the thank you section below. 

Please DO NOT attend the surgery for any reason unless you have been advised to.

For patients that are unable to use these online tools, and all self care measures have been exhausted or your symptoms are worsening or you have a significant health concern, please call the surgery. Appointments are being switched to telephone consultations and only patients that really need to be seen face to face after being assessed on the phone by a clinician will be made an appointment..

We will offer patients aged 70years & over, pregnant women and patients with chronic conditions the opportunity to have a telephone appointment if they prefer for their own safety.

The practice will continue to have processes to ensure essential care continues.

If you are seen at the surgery your clinician may need to wear gloves, apron and mask so do not be alarmed.

NOTE: We cannot test for COVID 19.

Important links:



Thank you from Skerne Medical Practice

A big thank you to our patients for your understanding and co-operation over the last few months and special thanks to those who have donated equipment, cleaning supplies, etc. and kept our staff in good spirits with their support and kindness during this time. To help with the provision of an excellent service for you and your family we would like to highlight some ways that you can help.

Prescription ordering online Please register for an online service to order medications and make telephone appointments from the comfort of your home without the need to visit or call the surgery. Orders will be processed during working hours (8am-6pm) and sent to the local pharmacy. To arrange to use the service, please call your surgery, and one of our Reception Team will be happy to set it up for you. You will receive a unique username and password (please keep them secure). The website is . There is also an app, SystmOnline which can be downloaded on iOS (Apple) or Android devices. We recommend this service and hope that you enjoy using the facilities the service gives you and saves you from coming into the surgery or sitting in a queue on the phone.

Electronically transferring prescriptions You can also arrange for us to transfer prescriptions to your local pharmacy, so you don’t need to make unnecessary journeys. This includes repeat dispensing for patients who are stable on suitable medications. Please allow a little longer than the normal 48 hours for pharmacies to prepare prescriptions during the current lockdown.

Contact Details It’s really important to keep these updated so that you can receive the latest information by text message or email. If your mobile telephone number or email address has changed, please call us and let reception know. With your help we can ensure everyone gets the best care possible during these challenging times. Please stay well and safe at home.

attached July News from the Practice.


We need to drastically reduce the issuing of printed prescriptions, wherever possible prescriptions will be sent electronically to your pharmacy of choice to limit/stop footfall to the surgery. If you have not been setup electronically with a pharmacy, you will be asked on the telephone for your nominated pharmacy so that your prescription can be sent electronically there.

PLEASE DO NOT ORDER ANY MORE THAN YOUR USUAL PRESCRIPTION REQUIREMENTS - this is NHS guidance to protect continuity of supplies for everybody.

Please be aware pharmacies are seeing increased demand on their services too so it make take longer than 48hours for prescription requests to be processed.

Public Consultation outcome

At the Primary Care Committee on 21/1/20 Option 1 was fully approved.  This enables Skerne Medical Group to remain in and extend Harbinson House surgery, Sedgefield, remain in and extend Trimdon Colliery surgery and ultimately to close Fishburn surgery. Work on this option will now be progressed.


This new service lets patients consult with NHS GPs by completing a quick online form.  This service also directs patients to self-help, pharmacy advice and local self-referral services.  Just click on the picture below to get started (please note this service does not guarantee liaison with a particular GP).


Veterans' Support

Find Support for Veterans in Your Local Area via -

Connect veterans and their families with a range of local support organisations – both within and outside the Armed Forces sector. The services have been grouped into categories such as Education and Training, Employment, Finances etc.

Navigate through the categories to find the support you need, or use the search function by clicking on the magnifying glass icon in the map toolbar;

  • On the map home screen, the search function searches all organisations in the directory.
  • When you have a category open, the search function searches all data within that category



Have you moved or have you changed your contact details? Have you told us too? Please keep us updated with your details.

When we're closed - Between the hours of 18:00 and 08:00 including weekends and Bank Holidays, assistance is available from the out-of-hours service, please contact NHS 111.

For emergency appointments every Saturday, Sunday and during Bank Holiday closures please contact NHS 111, who will direct you to your nearest available service.

For further information relating to these services please press here to Find out more. For Information relating to Pharmacies that are open over the Holiday weekend in this area, please choose Darlington.doc or Durham.doc. For information relating to Hospitals and Dentists, please click on the NHS Choices Icon at the bottom of this page. To find out about our Practice Values Find out more

Accessible Information Standard

If you, or anyone you know, has a communication difficulty and needs information in a different format, e.g. large text or easy read, please let us know.   For more information about the accessible information standard, please visit NHS England's website:

Did you know that you can cancel your appointment with us in a click through SystmOnline Online Services.


(Site updated 19/01/2021)
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