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Winchcombe Medical Centre

' Over the counter ' medications ( posted on Jun 26, 2018 )



Change Of Prescribing For Over The Counter Medications



What is changing?


As of May 2018, a range of medicines that are available to buy over the counter from pharmacies and supermarkets will no longer be routinely prescribed by GP Surgeries.


The annual prescribing cost for these medicines in Gloucestershire is around £2 million which could be put to better use to support more serious health conditions.


The change applies to medications for a total of 35 conditions including coughs, colds, hayfever, nappy rash, warts and verrucas, earwax and headlice.


Full list:  www.gloucestershire.nhs.uk/otc



Will there be any exceptions?


v Patients prescribed an over-the-counter medicine for a long term or more complex health condition.


v Where a clinician considers that a patient’s wellbeing could be affected.



How much to these medicines cost?


The average cost of these medicines will be around £2 - £3.


A small pack of paracetamol costs as little as 35p.

PRESCRIPTION CHARGES ( posted on Apr 9, 2018 )

Please note from April 1st the charge for a prescription is £8.80

FRIENDS & FAMILY JUNE ( posted on Apr 5, 2018 )

We had 17 comment cards in the month of June


100% were extremely likely to recommend us.


Some of the comments received were ;


' Came in quite worried about my condition and after seeing the nurse left feeling reassured.'


' A very positive experience for a minor injury on my foot, reception staff were very helpful and Nick was friendly and gave some great advice '


' Thank you for providing the emergency appointment system '


' Shelly is always so helpful on reception - always a cheery smile '


' A very caring practice, receptionists always very helpful '


' I have always had exceptional treatment and service from this practice. Nick Puffett and Erica Mitchell have been exceptional in their care. Reception staff always helpful. Dispensary quick and excellent '

IMPROVED ACCESS APPOINTMENTS ( posted on Mar 29, 2018 )

CQC Statement of Purpose:

As a member Practice of Cheltenham Peripheral Cluster we also participate in the provision of Improved Access appointments via a shared rota. This gives patients an opportunity to book an appointment with General Practice each weekday Monday to Friday 18.30 - 20.00 hrs, Saturday mornings from 08.30 – 12.30 hrs.

Records are shared across the practices with adherence to strict IT Governance and Confidentiality rules and a signed Information Sharing Agreement has been signed and approved by each practice Named Improved Access Lead and approved by each practice Caldicott Guardian.

The Cheltenham Peripheral Cluster consists of 5 GP practices:

  • Leckhampton Surgery
  • Seven Posts Surgery
  • Sixways Clinic
  • Stoke Road Surgery
  • Winchcombe Medical Centre

 Patients from cluster practices are managed under our current registered Regulated Activities and consulting GP responsibility agreement.

Prescription ordering ( posted on Oct 13, 2017 )

In order to increase efficiency for all our patients we will no longer be accepting e mail prescription orders from 1st January 2018. The safest, easiest and most efficient method of ordering prescriptions is using Systmonline.

Just call into Reception at the Surgery and ask to sign up to online ordering. You will need to bring some photo ID with you and will be given a printed sheet with a username and password. When you log on you will be asked to change the password to something personal.

All repeat medications will appear on screen so you can tick the boxes of those you require. There is also space to add any helpful comments such as ' ordering early due to holiday ' etc

This method ensures mistakes cannot be made and is confidential and simple.

For more information please see posters in the surgery or ask at Reception or Dispensary.

X-ray facilities ( posted on Jul 6, 2017 )

Although we offer a Minor Injury service here at the Surgery we DO NOT have any X-ray facilities. Therefore if you have an accident and think you may have fractured a bone please take yourself directly to A & E at either Cheltenham or Tewkesbury. This will save you 2 trips and free up appointments here at the Surgery.


Many thanks

MOBILE NUMBERS ( posted on Jun 30, 2017 )

We endeavour to offer our patients the most efficient service we can, this includes texting confirmation and reminders for appointments etc which we can only do if we have current mobile numbers.

Can you check that we have your correct mobile number and if you need to update details please let Reception know. There are forms available in Reception to record your details.


Many thanks

EYE INJURIES ( posted on Jun 30, 2017 )




Please be aware that we cannot deal with any eye injuries here at the Medical Centre as we do not have the specialist equipment required.

If you injure your eye you should seek urgent medical advice at either Cheltenham or Tewkesbury Hospitals.

Chicken Pox advice ( posted on Jun 1, 2017 )

We are hearing of lots of children suffering with Chicken Pox at the moment. Children do not necessarily need to see a Dr if they seem well but below are a list of symptoms that would require medical assessment :

Breathing problems

Weakness such as a child becoming wobbly on their feet


Fits ( convulsions )

Pains or headaches which become worse despite paracetamol

Being unable to take fluids due to a severe rash in the mouth

A severe rash or a rash which bruises or bleeds into the skin

Becoming generally more and more unwell

Red eyes

Bad cough


A helpful website which gives more information is






Day Care Centre ( posted on Apr 7, 2017 )

The Day Care Centre in Winchcombe is offering a new service to over 55's. A warm welcome awaits For learning, laughing, friendship and fun Discover what BeSocial@GL54 has to offer – and it could open the door to a whole new adventure in learning and leisure. Whether you’d like to try gentle exercise, walking rugby, flower-arranging, poetry, art, belly dancing, or learn a new language – BeSocial@GL54 is the place to start. Many of our courses are based at our centre in Langley Road, Winchcombe, which provides warm and friendly surroundings. The majority of our tutors are professionally qualified in their field and have been running classes for many years – so know how to get the best of out of their students! We also run monthly Tea Dances on a Wednesday afternoon at the Abbey Fields Community Centre, in Back Lane, Winchcombe, from 2pm to 4pm, with live music, tea and cake. See our Timetable of events for more information. BeSocial@GL54 courses run on Tuesdays and Fridays throughout the year – except for August. Full details, prices, dates and times can be found on our Timetable of events page.  For more information call Vicky now: 01242 603207 Email us: info@besocialwinchcombe.com

Ring Ring ( posted on Apr 7, 2017 )

Since our new telephony equipment was installed earlier this year we now have the technology to monitor how many calls are received and made at the Medical Centre. In the past 4 days we have received 1374 calls as of 9 am friday. The busiest time is always between 8 -9 am with 258 calls taken in this period .Therefore we would suggest that if you are not calling for an emergency appointment it would be best to call after 9 am when the lines will be less busy.

PPG Facebook presence ( posted on Jan 30, 2017 )

The PPG - Patient Participation Group - has recently set up a Facebook page to keep patients aware of their involvement with Winchcombe Medical Centre and forthcoming events they are helping to organise. Why not take a look and 'Like' their page.


Click on the link below:



CQC rating ( posted on Nov 14, 2016 )

Accessible Information Standard ( posted on Jul 28, 2016 )

Winchcombe Medical Centre aims to make information accessible to everyone. If you or anyone you know has any problems with eyesight or hearing and would like to be contacted in a certain way i.e by letter rather than telephone or vice versa please let the surgery know. A note will be made on your record to indicate your preference to make sure you are contacted correctly in future.


Posters are displayed in both waiting rooms at the surgery and Reception are happy to help.


There is also a very useful link : http:www.easyhealth.org.uk/

Dental pain ( posted on Apr 1, 2016 )

How to manage dental pain:


* Initially treat dental pain with regular paracetamol


* Take ibuprofen as well  ( if you are able to ) because it helps reduce inflammation ( which causes the pain )



* Doctors and Nurses no longer prescribe antibiotics for dental infections - IT MUST BE A DENTIST

Self help treatment of ear wax ( posted on Feb 4, 2016 )

Did you know you can treat the removal of ear wax yourself? Local pharmacies Lloyds in Winchcombe and Badhams in Bishops Cleeve sell Otex self cleaning ear wax kits for less than £10. The instructions are easy to follow and once you have bought the kit you can just buy more drops if necessary. This would save you having to have an appointment at the Surgery and means you can treat yourself in the comfort of your own home.

For more information, sheets of general instructions can be collected from reception at the Surgery. Of course if you have any worries about this procedure you should still have an appointment with the Nurse to go through things and for them to check your ears first.

Travel Vaccination Procedure ( posted on Dec 15, 2015 )

Those patients wishing to have travel vaccinations should now call in to the surgery and collect a questionnaire which should be completed with as much detail as possible. Once the questionnaire is returned  Reception will book a double appointment with one of the nurses. An Invoice will be raised and only when the invoice for vaccinations has been paid in full can the vaccine be administered.

Blood Pressure self test ( posted on Dec 15, 2015 )

Patients who are invited in to have their blood pressure monitored can now take advantage of our self testing service. The room adjacent to reception is now set up with a BP monitor that patients can use independently at a time to suit them.


Just call in to the surgery any time between 8.15am and 6.30pm to check your own bp, record it on a test sheet and pass it to reception. Your record will then be input on to your medical record by a nurse and you will be contacted if there are any problems or if you need to come in for a repeat test.


Patients who wish to register at the surgery ( posted on Jan 26, 2015 )

On the 1st January 2015 NHS regulations around how practices can manage requests to register patients who live outside their usual geographical boundaries changed. Winchcombe Medical Centre will consider requests to provide routine care for patients who work within our area but live elsewhere. These requests will be screened by a GP prior to registration alongside the new patient questionnaire. Issues such as your general state of health and the likelihood that you will suffer acute illnesses will be considered before a decision is made.
The decision of the registering GP can take several weeks and once made will be final.
If your out of area registration is accepted you will be notified by our reception team. Once registered if you become well at your permanent address outside of our area we will not provide urgent medical services or home visits to you. These services will be allocated via NHS 111 who you will need to phone. Please bear this in mind when you apply to register with us as it may provide some disruption to your care.

Change to online appointment booking ( posted on Aug 11, 2014 )

In co-operation with Systm one, our computer system supplier, we are providing a service that enables you access to your healthcare online.


Once you have created an account you can book and cancel appointments with your doctor. 

Please note that you will need to register for this service with the practice in person. We will then give you a pin number and password. For reasons of confidentiality we will not give these details to other family members and this service is not availbale to patients under the age of 16. You will also need to bring photographic identification to request a PIN.




The link to the site for appointment booking is as follows:




There is also a handy app that can be downloaded called Systmonline

New animation about Care Data ( posted on Feb 4, 2014 )

NHS England have recently produced an animation explaining Care Data and what it means to you.


Please click here to view the video.

PPG wins National Award! ( posted on May 30, 2013 )

I write with the fantastic news that out Patient Participation Group has been awarded the accolade of Patient Participation Group of the Year, 2013 by the National Association of Patient Participation. With 94 GP Practices in Gloucestershire alone and goodness knows how many in the country this really does recognise our fantastic team of hard working volunteers and all of the hard work that they have put in to improving patient services locally. The GP Partners and I offer the group our thanks and Congratulations and look forward to joining them in Bristol on the 8th June to receive the award.

 Any patients who wish to join the group, particularly the Virtual group should e-mail patientparticipation@glos.nhs.uk or call into the surgery to collect a form. The virtual group so far has in the region of 30 members who give their feedback via e-mail only meaning that they don't have to give up as much time as you might imagine. To find out more about the fantastic work of the group, click here.

 Anyone who wishes to make a comment about surgery or local services - be they good or bad, can do so at the e-mail address above or by dropping a hand written comment card into the box on reception.


In an Emergency - Choose Well ( posted on Jun 21, 2011 )




In a medical emergency it’s difficult to know who to turn to and many people will just head straight to Accident and Emergency. In some cases this is indeed the right choice but at other times remember what other services are available to you and in an emergency….. Choose Well.


When to phone an ambulance or go straight to A&E:

  • The patient has collapsed and is unconscious and may or may not be breathing.
  • Sudden, severe chest pain.
  • Signs of a stroke (sudden weakness of arms, legs or face and a loss or slurring of speech.)
  • Early pregnancy with severe abdominal pain.


When to phone the Doctor:

On weekdays between the hours of 8.30am and 6.30pm and if there is no immediate threat to life and the patient is not suffering with any of the symptoms listed above, call us on 01242 602307. Very unwell children with high temperatures can be assessed by their GP and an unnecessary trip to hospital can be avoided. Chest pain that has been ongoing for several days (NOT sudden and severe) can also be best managed by your GP. We are also a minor injuries unit so can manage emergencies such as animal bites, cuts, sprains and allergic reactions. If your problem is deemed serious enough to warrant an admission to hospital, this can all be arranged from the surgery.


If the surgery is closed?

Phone our main number 01242 602307 which will transfer you to Gloucestershire Out of Hours Service. This is a GP-led service based at Cheltenham and Tewkesbury Hospitals for emergencies that cannot wait until the GP surgery re-opens. Alternatively phone NHS 111 and you will be given advice over the phone about managing your health problem.


Accident and Emergency is there for those who need it in a threat to life situation or to treat major injuries. If your emergency is not life threatening— Choose Well.

Walks on Prescription ( posted on Feb 22, 2011 )

As part of our campaign to help patients Stay Healthy and Live Well, and in collaboration with Winchcombe Welcomes Walkers and Walk 4 Life, we are proud to now offer Walks on Prescription.


Click here to download your own map of local Winchcombe walks for beginners.  Don't forget to download both documents.

Managing in very Cold Weather ( posted on Jan 5, 2011 )

Follow these tips to keep you and your family warm and well in extremely cold weather. 


To keep warm and well during periods of cold weather:

  • Keep curtains drawn and doors closed to block out draughts.
  • Have regular hot drinks and at least one hot meal a day if possible. Eating regularly helps keep energy levels up during winter. 
  • Wear several light layers of warm clothes (rather than one chunky layer). 
  • Keep as active as possible.
  • Wrap up warm if you need to go outside on cold days.

Keep your main living room at around 18-21°C (64-70°F), and the rest of the house at least 16°C (61°F). If you can’t heat all the rooms you use, heat the living room during the day and the bedroom just before you go to sleep.

Icy conditions

Icy pavements and roads can be very slippery. Take extra care if you go out and wear boots or shoes with good grip on the soles. The Met Office advises putting grit or cat litter on paths and driveways to lessen the risk of slipping. It adds that you should wait until the roads have been gritted if you're travelling by car. The Highways Agency offers useful advice on travelling in snow and freezing conditions.

Bear in mind that black ice on pavements or roads might not be clearly visible, and that compacted snow may turn to ice and become slippery.

Weather warnings

The Met Office provide the weather forecasts for broadcasts on radio and TV, so listen in to these bulletins regularly to keep up to date with the weather. Severe weather warnings are also issued on the Met Office website www.metoffice.gov.uk, or you can ring the customer centre on 0870 900 0100

Look out for others

Check up on friends, relatives and neighbours who may be more vulnerable to cold weather. Cold weather is especially dangerous for older people or people with serious illnesses, so check up on them if you can. 

People with heart or respiratory (breathing) problems may have worse symptoms during a cold spell and for several days after temperatures return to normal.

Managing Memory Service ( posted on Feb 21, 2010 )

We are pleased to be piloting a new NHS initiative called Managing Memory Together.

Managing Memory Together offers information, advice and group information sessions to people affected by dementia or who are worried about memory.

The project which is led by ²gether NHS Foundation Trust has been developed in partnership with carers, Carers Gloucestershire, Gloucestershire County Council and local branches of the Alzheimer’s Society.

For more information about the Managing Memory Together including details of group information session please visit 


Touchscreen Check In ( posted on Feb 8, 2010 )

We are now pleased to offer our patients an automated check in system to beat the queues at the reception desk.

The new touch screen is an optional way to let us know that you have arrived for your appointment. Simply follow the instructions on the screen, entering your sex and date of birth and you will automatically be checked in.

The Touch screen system WILL NOT display any details of your appointment other than the time and clinician who you are due to see.

EXTENDED HOURS ( posted on Dec 31, 2009 )

We are now able to offer our patients appointments with Doctors outside of usual working hours.

The Practice Team have taken on board feedback from some patients and we understand that due to work and childcare commitments some of you find it difficult to attend our core surgeries. To combat this we are pleased to be opting in to the Extended Hours scheme from January 2010.

Extended Hours surgeries are skeleton surgeries and are only for routine appointments. Please call reception for more information or to make an appointment.

COLDS AND FLU GUIDELINES ( posted on Jan 19, 2009 )

The runny nose, sore throat or "bunged up" feeling you get during a cold is caused by one of many viruses - often a rhinovirus - and they can infect your nose, throat, sinuses and airways.Influenza - or flu - is caused by influenza virus.  Flu has similar symptoms to a cold but tends to be a more severe illness.  In vulnerable people, such as the elderly or people with lung disease, it can lead to serious complications.Although colds and flu can make you feel miserable, your body will usually fight off the infection on its own, without medical treatment.Infected people can spread cold and flu viruses from a day before symptoms start and up to five days afterwards.  On average, adults catch two to three colds each year.  School-age children can have twelve or more colds in a year.



The cold virus grows in the soft, war surfaces of your nose, throat, sinuses and airways, so this is where you usually get the symptoms.  Typically, you will get a blocked or runny nose, sneezing, sore throat and a cough.  You might also have a fever, aching muscles and general tiredness.  These symptoms usually last for about a week.


The symptoms are similar to cold but the muscle aching is usually more severe and the tiredness may last for a few weeks after the illness has cleared up.  You are likely to get a fever, and you may also lose your appetite, feel or be sick or have diarrhoea.

Complications of flu

To most healthy adults, flu is just like a nasty cold.  However, young children, the elderly and people with long-term illnesses are more likely to get complications.You are at greater risk of developing complications, if you live in a care home or if you have:

  • Asthma;
  • chronic lung disease such as obstructive pulmonary disease;
  • diabetes;
  • heart disease;
  • kidney diseases and kidney failure;
  • reduced immunity, for example if you have HIV/AIDS or have had your spleen removed.


There is no cure for colds or flu.  Antibiotics, which treat infections due to bacteria, do not work on cold and flu viruses.  However, there are things you can do to help yourself feel better.

  • Drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration.
  • For adults, use the painkiller that you would normally take for a headache to help relieve the fever and pain.  Always follow the instructions carefully and take care to stay within the safe daily doses.  It is easy to accidentally exceed these by using more than one product (eg tablets, capsules, a hot lemon drink) containing the same active ingredient, such as Paracetamol.
  • Ask your pharmacist for advice on products that contain a decongestant - these can help to clear your blocked nose by reducing swelling.
  • Eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables.
  • Rest.
  • Don't smoke.

Complementary medicines

Supplements of vitamin C, zinc and the herbal remedy Echinacea are popular for preventing and treating colds.  However, there is no good evidence that they are effective.  There is some evidence that taking vitamin C supplements may slightly reduce the length of time you have symptoms of cold or flu.

Antiviral medicines

If you are in general good health and are not elderly, you probably won't need any specific medical treatment for flu apart from the home care suggested above.  However, if you are likely to get complications you should seek advice from the surgery or NHS Direct on 0845 4647.


There are a few steps that you can take to help prevent catching colds and flu:

  • eat a balanced diet that is rich in fruit and vegetables
  • take regular (preferably daily) exercise
  • don’t smoke – or if you do try to stop – because smokers are more likely to catch colds and flu.
To help prevent spreading a cold or flu:
  • try to stay away from other people to prevent the virus from spreading
  • wash your hands regularly
  • throw away tissues as soon as you have used them


The flu jab will provide you with good protection against the flu virus for one year.

It is available free for everyone over 65 and is recommended for people at risk from the complications of flu.


For advice on managing colds and flu symptoms ring NHS 111


When to call the doctor

You should consult a doctor, practice nurse or pharmacist for advice if you get any of the following symptoms with a cold: 

  • severe vomiting or diarrhoea;
  • earache;
  • difficulty breathing;
  • skin rash;
  • uncontrollable cough;
  • cough with yellowy green or rust-coloured sputum (phlegm);
  • extreme lethargy or drowsiness.
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