Welcome to Constable Country Medical Practice
With patients' needs at the heart of everything we do, our website has been designed to make it easy for you to gain instant access to the information you need. As well as specific practice details such as opening hours and how to register, you’ll find a wealth of useful pages covering a wide range of health issues along with links to other relevant medical organisations.
For further information regarding the eConsult service at the Practice please click on the following link:
- Posted January 2020
From 8th January 2020 Ear Irrigation (Ear Syringing) will no longer be available at Constable Country Medical Practice
we endeavour to provide the best practice and high quality medical care to our registered patients. Ear syringing is no longer considered to be the first line of treatment for the clearing of ear wax and it is not a funded service within the NHS for general practice.
Current guidelines are that ear drops should be used to soften the wax which will then enable the natural movement of the wax from the ear. Further information and treatment options are available on https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/earwax-build-up/
In line with current best practice and many other GP surgeries nationwide, Constable Country Medical Practice has made the decision to withdraw the ear syringing service with effect from 8th January 2020.
- posted December 2019
Accessing Your Local Clinical Team – Top Tips!
Our New Appointment System is working well but I thought it would be useful to provide a few tips on how to get the most out of your local clinical team:
- If you work and find it difficult to attend the practice during the day, our reception team can book 15 minute face to face evening and weekend GP appointments with GP+. Nurse appointments are also available
- Use your local pharmacy! Pharmacists are highly trained and can provide advice and over the counter medication for a wide range of ailments. If they feel you need to speak to a doctor, they will tell you.
- Our reception team is experienced and well-trained. They cannot offer clinical advice but they can advise on how best to get the treatment you need. For example, this may be self-referral to a Physio or Wellbeing service or signposting to one of a number of specialist health organisations such as Dementia Together, Travel Clinic, Community Connector scheme, Sexual Health, Suffolk Mind.
- You can request a same-day call-back from one of our doctors online from 7am in the morning. You will need to be registered for online services and can then book a call-back via our Website or via the NHS App.
- You can request a doctor to call you before 1pm or after 1pm. Unfortunately, the nature of primary care is that emergencies and unforeseen events often occur. These have a knock-on impact and may mean the doctor needs to phone at a different time, so please bear in with us.
- If you are only available to take a call at a specific time (e.g. lunch break) then inform our reception team and they will let the doctor know. They will do their best to contact you at this time.
- If you miss a call from a doctor, they will try again. If you miss the call a second time then please phone the practice to confirm you still need to speak to a doctor. They will normally leave a voice or text message on both occasions.
- You don’t need to ring us first thing in the morning, but don’t leave it too late in the day. Doctors will try to call all patients on their list by 5pm just in case they need to be seen in person.
- Every day is different. Mondays are usually very busy and to ensure we operate safely we sometimes have to limit the number of patients our doctors speak to in one day, unless you have an urgent need which can’t wait. We start every day with no appointments booked, so if it’s busy one day and your need can wait, then try the following day.
Over the Christmas period we will be holding the extended hours on a Monday. The extended hours will be on Monday 23rd December and Monday 30th December.
- posted September 2019
The Active Wellbeing service is here at the Constable Country Medical Practice to help you become more physically active.
Our Physical Activity Advisors are here to offer you the support that you need to become more active! Find out about what activities/classes/schemes are available to you locally, discuss how to overcome any barriers, issues or concerns that you might have and find out how physical activity can improve your physical, mental and social health.
Speak to reception, your GP / Practice Nurse / member of staff or self-refer today.
- Posted September 2019
Appointment System Update
The practice implemented a new appointment system on 2nd September. We held two patient engagement events in July and have been trialling the system on Tuesdays. This has enabled us to refine the new system based on patient feedback, though it will continue to evolve over the coming weeks.
Please note that there will be no pre-bookable appointments. If you need to speak to a doctor you can request that they call you the same day. If you need to be seen (about a third of all cases) the doctor will arrange for you to be seen the same day or on a future date.
Patients can request a call back from a doctor online from 7am, or phone the practice or call in to request one via a receptionist. It helps if you tell the receptionist the nature of your problem as it may be more appropriate for you to speak to our pharmacy technician or another member of our clinical team. They can also inform the doctor if your need is urgent. There may also be other NHS healthcare organisations or other clinical staff who are better equipped to address your problem or answer your query.
As last year, patients over 65 will be administered a different flu vaccine to those under 65. Unfortunately, there have again been delays in manufacture which means that delivery of the under-65’s vaccine is staged. This complicates the vaccination programme and we will therefore implement a similar system to last year.
We will hold a number of flu clinics and will send personalised letters to every eligible patient inviting them to attend on specific dates. These letters will be sent through September and October. Please attend on the earliest date possible when you receive a letter. Please don’t attend a flu clinic if you don’t receive a letter as we may not have taken delivery of the vaccine you require. If you haven’t received a letter by the end of October and you are over 65 or believe you are eligible for a free vaccination because of your medical condition, then please contact the practice.
Please note that the practice will be closed from 1pm on the following dates for staff training:
Wednesday 11th September
Thursday 10th October
Wednesday 6th November
On these afternoons the Capel St Mary building will be open to enable access to the pharmacy but the Practice reception will be closed. East Bergholt reception will be open. Please note that there will be no clinicians at either building after 1pm as they will be attending training off-site. Our phone lines will be closed for the afternoon. If you need medical assistance please contact 111. If your need is urgent then please dial 999 or attend your local A&E.
- Posted 5th August 2019
Appointment System Update
The practice will be implementing a new appointment system on 2nd September. The two open days we held in July were a great success and we have updated our appointment system leaflet to answer queries raised by patients. Please visit our website or pick up a leaflet for more information.
Please note that there will be no pre-bookable appointments. If you need to speak to a doctor you can request them to call you the same day. If you need to be seen (about a third of all cases) the doctor will arrange for you to be seen the same day.
Patients can request a call back from a doctor online from 7am, or phone the practice or call in to request one via a receptionist. It helps if you tell the receptionist the nature of your problem as it may be more appropriate for you to speak to our pharmacy technician or another member of our clinical team. They can also inform the doctor if your need is urgent.
The new system will be more convenient for many patients as they won’t have to physically come to the practice. Having no pre-bookable appointments means that there is no need to call the practice at 8am, though if you think the doctor may wish to see you in person please call in the morning. You will usually be able to choose which doctor you would prefer to call you back. You can also submit an online consultation request via our eConsult service.
New Appointment System Booklet
National Patient Survey
The results of the national survey were published this month and we are delighted that overall patient satisfaction is up 16% to 79% and ease of getting though on the phone is up 22% to 64%. 94% of patients found our receptionists helpful and 75% of patients describe their experience of making an appointment as good (up 20%). 95% of patients had confidence and trust in the healthcare professional they last spoke to and 96% felt their needs were met during their last appointment.
Thank you to all patients who completed the survey. We value feedback and are delighted that the service we offer has improved significantly. However, we are always looking to further improve our service and value all feedback made directly to the practice or via our Patient Participation Group.
As last year, patients over 65 will be administered a different flu vaccine to those under 65. Unfortunately, there have again been delays in manufacture which means that delivery of the under-65’s vaccine is staged. This complicates the vaccination programme and we will therefore implement a similar system to last year. We will hold a number of flu clinics and will send personalised letters to every eligible patient inviting them to attend on specific dates. These letters will be sent through September and October. Please attend on the earliest date possible when you receive a letter. Please don’t attend a flu clinic if you don’t receive a letter as we may not have taken delivery of the vaccine you require. If you haven’t received a letter by the end of October and you are over 65 or believe you are eligible for a free vaccination because of your medical condition, then please contact the practice.
- Posted 2nd July 2019
Appointment System Update
The practice will be implementing a new appointment system on 2nd September.
We will be holding open days at The Vine Lounge, Capel St Mary on Tuesday 23rd July between 2pm and 6pm, and at the East Bergholt Medical Centre on Wednesday 24th July between 6pm and 8pm. These are drop-in events and patients are welcome to call in between these times.
We will be able to explain the new system and answer any questions on either the appointment system or any other aspect of the practice. In the meantime, information leaflets will be available in waiting rooms and on our website which explain the new system. We want to ensure the new system will improve access when we introduce it and we value your feedback to enable us to finalise the details.
New Appointment System Booklet
I’m pleased to announce that from 1st July the practice will be extending its opening hours. Our Capel St Mary site will now be open every Tuesday from 7am to 8am and 6:30pm to 7:30pm for patients with pre-booked appointments between these times. We will be holding two phlebotomy clinics between 7am and 8am and a dressings clinic between 6:30pm and 7:30pm. These appointments are pre-bookable via our reception team. We will also be holding GP surgeries between 7am and 8am, and 6:30pm and 7:30pm. These will be bookable by the doctors. So if you need a GP appointment outside normal working hours, please let the doctor know when you speak to them. Please note that no other service will be available during these times e.g. appointment booking or general queries.
- Posted 18th June 2019
Appointment System Update
Further to last month’s announcement, I can confirm that the practice will be implementing a new appointment system on 2nd September.
The new system will be a call back system which has been successfully implemented at many practices across Suffolk. Our medical receptionists will continue to take details from patients and will determine how they can best help them. This may include booking an appointment with a practice nurse or HCA, directing to a pharmacist, booking a minor illness appointment with a nurse practitioner, or liaising with a doctor on the patient’s behalf.
Where a patient needs to talk to a doctor, they will be placed on the list of the doctor of their choice who will call them back within an agreed time slot. They will discuss the patient’s problem with them and if necessary arrange for them to see them or another clinician the same day.
The system is an on-the-day only system. There will be no pre-bookable appointments. These will not be needed as patients will be able to speak to a doctor and see them the same day if necessary. The only exceptions to pre-booking will be patients with medial conditions which require arrangements to be made for them to attend the practice.
We will be holding open days at East Bergholt and Capel on the afternoons of 23rd July at The Vine Lounge, Capel St Mary and 24th July at our practice in East Bergholt, where we will be able to explain the new system and answer any questions on either the appointment system or any other aspect of the practice. In the meantime, information leaflets will be available in waiting rooms and on our website which explain the new system. We want to ensure the new system will improve access when we introduce it and value your feedback to enable us to finalise the details.
- Posted 3rd May 2019
Appointment System and Patient Contact Review
The practice will be implementing a new appointment system in July/August. The current system works well but we have been reviewing systems used at other practices and we feel we can improve it further.
However, the appointment system is just one facet of the practice and we want to take the opportunity to review all patient contact with the aim of making it simple for you to contact us and for us to address your needs in a clear and straightforward manner. We will also review how we contact patients when we need to, for example to inform them of test results or to book annual checks.
Over the next couple of months we will be consulting with patients to understand how we can improve the service we offer to ensure it is efficient, easy to use and provides the level of service you expect from your GP practice. This includes the use of text message, email, our website, online consultations as well as your contact with the practice over the phone and face to face. In short, we want to offer an excellent patient experience which meets the individual needs of patients.
We will be holding open days at East Bergholt and Capel in June (dates TBC) and will provide more details as we firm up how we intend to change our systems.
In the meantime, we would like to hear your thoughts on what works well (we don’t want to change what already works well) and what can be improved. Areas to consider are how you prefer to interact with the practice (e.g. phone, email text), areas where we need to focus on because needs are not always met first time, e.g. medication, and indeed any other aspect of providing healthcare which you feel we can improve upon e.g. continuity of care.
Any thoughts would be appreciated and you can either send me a short letter, let any of our staff know your thoughts who will then relay them to me, phone the practice and ask to speak to me or send a suggestion via the contact page on our Website at www.constablecountrymedicalpractice.co.uk. We’d love to hear from you!
- Posted 5th March 2019
New Appointment Cancellation Service
If you need to cancel an appointment, you can now send us a text message. This should help reduce the number of non-attended appointments and also provide a simple method for patients to let us know they need to cancel rather than wait in the telephone queue first thing in the morning.
To cancel an appointment, simply send a message to 07562618401 and include your name, date of birth and the date and time of the appointment you wish to cancel. Please note that this number can only be used for appointment cancellations. Any other enquires will not be answered if sent to this number.
- Posted 8th January 2018
National GP Patient Survey Questionnaires
You may receive a survey from Ipsos Mori over the next couple of months requesting feedback on the how the practice has performed. If you receive one, please complete and return it. Feedback is really important to us. We have been working hard over the last couple of years to improve the service we offer and patient feedback is vital in understanding the progress we have made and which areas we need to focus on.
For further news and updates please click the following link:
Provide feedback about the practice to Healthwatch
Click here to leave feedback about our Capel St Mary site
Care Quality Commissioner - Practice Quality Report
Please follow the link below to take you to our most recent CQC report dated 16th May 2018
GP + Appointments
Suffolk GP+ is for people who urgently need a doctor’s appointment or are unable to see their GP during normal GP hours.
Appointments can be made via reception during our usual opening hours. Please note that patients cannot refer themselves to this service.
The service is staffed by local Suffolk GPs and Nurse Practitioners in Ipswich, Felixstowe, Stowmarket, Leiston & Wickham Market and is an NHS Service delivered by the Suffolk GP Federation.
You will be given a booked appointment and will be seen by a suitable local GP or nurse who will have access to your medical records (once consent is given).
Get Well, Keep Well
Of course we’re not just here for when you are unwell. Our team of healthcare professionals and additional clinicians offer a number of clinics and services to promote good health and wellbeing whatever your medical condition. This may include services offered by the Midwife, Podiatrist or Acupuntcure and Chinese herbal medicine Doctor.
We hope you enjoy having a look around the site and familiarising yourself with some of the online features such as ordering a repeat prescription. Whatever your thoughts, be sure to let us know via our feedback function. Comments and suggestions are always a great way of helping us continue to enhance the way we look after you.
The medical centre conforms to the guidelines laid down by the Disability Act and includes a lift to the first floor. The Capel surgery is accessible by ramp and staff are on hand to help with any enquiries or concerns.
(Site updated 17/01/2020)