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What’s included in Linbury Doctors membership?

Here at Linbury Doctors, we offer a personalised service including doctor home visits, so that our patients have continuity of care through their own private GP. This means we get to know our patients and their families, putting you at the centre of your healthcare. We deliberately keep our list size smaller to enable us to spend the time you need and to ensure you have the care and attention you deserve.

Direct Access to your own Private GP

For a monthly fee, our members-only doctors home visiting service gives you direct access to your private GP. We offer a personalised service which allows our patients to have continuity of care through their own private GP.

Doctor Home Visits

One of the key benefits that we can provide for you in our membership package is at-home doctor visits; understandably to us, patients feel far more comfortable in their own home, so we’re more than happy to come to you. Plus, if it’s more convenient for you, we can also visit you in your workplace. We offer same-day and pre-bookable appointments Monday to Friday, with urgent appointments at the weekend; whenever you need us, we’ll be there.

doctor home visits

Emergency Practice Line

As well as our convenient doctors home visits, we provide a whole range of benefits that include, but aren’t limited to, an emergency practice line if your dedicated private GP isn’t available. As one of the many benefits of being a member, an alternative contact is always offered, on the small chance it may be needed.

Flu Vaccinations

With winter slowly creeping around the corner, we all need to start preparing for an increase in the number of flu and COVID cases, which is expected to happen when temperatures start to drop. As a member of the Linbury practice, you will be offered a flu vaccine as part of your membership, regardless of whether you are in an at-risk group or not. Your private GP will be in touch with you to discuss having your vaccine.

If you’re a member, and would like to pre-book your jab, please do contact your dedicated doctor or call our practice line on 0333 050 7338. The flu vaccine will lower your risk of developing flu and serious complications, plus, preventing a rise in flu cases can help protect the NHS from becoming overwhelmed during the winter months, especially as COVID cases are also expected to rise.

We can visit you to administer the flu jab at a time and location that suits you – whether that be in the comfort of your own home, or at your place of work.

doctor home visits

No Rushed Appointments

As a member, you benefit from flexible appointment times. Plus, there’s no limit on the number of issues you can discuss with us; you don’t need to book multiple appointments if you have multiple questions. Your private GP is with you for as long as you need them, so you can get everything off your chest. If you have a family membership, we can also see your children at the same time, if necessary.

Here’s a full list of all the benefits we provide for you when you sign up for our membership:

  • Dedicated private GP
  • Direct GP access via phone, video call or email
  • GP appointments to suit your schedule
  • Doctor home visits
  • Direct access to GP for emergencies, advice, and reassurance
  • No time limits on appointments
  • Same-day prescriptions
  • Blood and urine tests with next day results
  • Direct access to private hospital consultants
  • Private immunisations
  • Annual Well Man or Well Woman health checks
  • Flu vaccinations
  • COVID 19 results fast-tracked

How Do I Become a Member?

Simply get in touch with us if you’d like to find out more about becoming a member. Call us on 0333 050 7338, or email info@linburydoctors.co.uk. Our friendly team is always on-hand to help. Alternatively, view the membership page on our website to get all the information you may require. Our private GPs cover Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Gloucestershire, Oxfordshire, the Cotswolds, Solihull, and surrounding areas. For further information about how we can help you and your family, contact us on 0333 050 7338.

How does the COVID Vaccine work?

We would like to share more insight into how the COVID vaccine will work, but before that; it is important to start this blog post by saying vaccines, in general, save more lives than any other medicine and come only second to clean water when it comes to preventing disease. Vaccines have been given to billions of people and have shown to be safe. They have become so successful that we have lost sight of many fatal diseases like measles, mumps and rubella. Instead, we’re left with no disease, and all everyone sees is a side effect from the vaccine, so they often get a bad press.

Here at Linbury Doctors, we offer private COVID tests with 48-hour results. Click here to find out more information, or get in touch with us on 0333 050 7338.

How do they work?

Most vaccines work by stimulating the immune system so it thinks it has met the disease before and fought it off. A lot of the vaccines we are used to are ‘attenuated pathogens’. This means taking a virus or bacteria and making it so it doesn’t cause that infection anymore but induces an immune response. They are called ‘replicating vaccines’, and some precautions sometimes need to be exercised in the immunosuppressed.

With Influenza, for instance, we take the virus, grow it, render it non-infectious by vaccinating with parts of the virus which triggers an immune response. This means if you were to come into contact with it, your body would be able to respond by releasing the immune cells needed as it had been tricked into thinking you’ve had it before.

There are several myths around, such as ‘the flu vaccine gives you flu’. But there is no possibility of this as the ingredients are inactive. We know it’s safe and it works.

Side effects are common, such as a short-lasting fever and a sore arm. Sometimes, the vaccine doesn’t work as well as we would like but that’s about matching the seasonal strain. We believe it to be a good match for the 2020 year.

What safety checks does the COVID vaccine have to pass before it can be used?

As the different variants of the COVID vaccine are being rolled out, they will be in rigorous trials. Once the trials have passed through the relevant stages, the regulator gives approval for the vaccine.

In the UK, the regulator is the MHRA. The Pfizer vaccine was approved by the MHRA a few weeks ago and has just received emergency approval from the FDA (American regulator).

Even after the vaccine receives approvals, safety checks are still carried out and any effects are reported and reviewed.

Who decides who receives the vaccine?

The joint committee on vaccination and immunisation has independent experts who decide how the vaccine programme is rolled out.

mRNA Vaccines (Pfizer/Moderna)

Both the Pfizer and Moderna jabs use technology known as mRNA, which introduces into the body a messenger sequence that contains the genetic instructions for the vaccinated person’s own cells to produce the antigens and generate an immune response.

It does not alter human cells but merely presents the body with instructions to build immunity to Coronavirus. These are new, but not completely new, as they have been used in oncology and other clinical settings.

Here at Linbury Doctors, we offer private COVID tests and can get the results back to our members on the same day. If you are currently suffering from symptoms, then get in touch with your private doctor directly, or give the practice a call on 0333 050 7338.

Concerned by the speed of the COVID-19 vaccine development?

With most vaccine development, it takes a long time to study and get the evidence as the infection pool is so small. With COVID-19, there was a huge infection pool, so we have been able to study the numbers needed in a small period of time.

The mRNA vaccines have been tested on up to 40,000 individuals, so they have been tested on the same number of individuals as any other previous vaccine in circulation. We know these vaccines are not causing severe adverse effects at this scale. Acute side effects are common, like being feverish next day or having a sore arm, but this is a strong signal that they are giving the immune system a kick and reassures you that your body is mounting a good immune response.

We know the first two vaccines prevent people from becoming unwell with COVID-19 and prevent serious illness. However, we don’t data have to see if they block transmission at present. As private doctors, we know that the risk of having serious consequences from getting COVID-19 – even if you’re not in a vulnerable category – is significantly higher than the risk of suffering mild side effects from the mRNA vaccines.

There have been some concerns raised that the mRNA vaccines may influence your chromosomes, but this is a myth; they are particularly safe as don’t penetrate the nucleus of cells. Plus, they are cleared from the system within 72 hours. There is therefore no link to mRNA vaccines and genetic modification.

The Pfizer vaccine has passed rigorous safety checks and, very recently, we received the welcomed news it has also passed emergency FDA approval so it will be rolled out in the United States.

The MHRA are continuing to monitor for side-effects, but only 2 people out of the thousands who received the vaccination in the first week developed allergic reactions.

Therefore, the advice has changed so that people with previous severe allergic reactions are unable to receive the Pfizer vaccine and the situation is being monitored.

AstraZeneca/Oxford Vaccination

The Oxford vaccine works like a traditional vaccination, more like the attenuated vaccines already discussed. It uses a harmless virus altered to look a lot more like the pandemic virus. An attenuated ‘spike protein’ of the virus is injected which the immune system builds up a response to as if the real virus has entered the body. Therefore, if you then come into contact with COVID-19, the body’s immune system will recognise this ‘spike protein’ and raise the immune response.

Source: BBC https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-55149138

Two full doses of the Oxford vaccine gave 62% protection, a half dose followed by a full dose was 90% and overall, the trial showed 70% protection.

Should I have the vaccine if I have had COVID?

Yes, is the short answer. We have no idea how long natural immunity will last, how good it will be and how durable. The current recommendation would be to have the vaccine if offered, even if you have had a proven COVID-19 infection.

If you are a member of Linbury Doctors, we can arrange for you to have a private COVID test, with a same-day result. Get in touch with your private GP to discuss, or give us a call on 0333 050 7338.

What is the rapid COVID antigen test?

The new rapid COVID test is a new test which looks for antigens for COVID-19. Antigens are portions of the virus that induce an immune response in your body. COVID antigen tests are being referred to as a ‘lateral flow test’. In the news recently the rapid tests are undergoing trials in Liverpool and some airports.

How does it work?

The COVID rapid antigen test is performed via a nasopharyngeal swab. We swab in the nostril to the back of the nasal cavity – a bit like the current COVID (PCR) swabs we currently undertake with our patients.  The swab is then mixed with a special solution and placed on a cassette and it takes just 15 minutes to show a result.

The accuracy of these results:

Sensitivity: 100%

Specificity: 96%

Accuracy 98%

The COVID rapid antigen tests have been studied in large studies in Europe, and followed up with PCR swabs ensuring their accuracy. If patients show a positive result its recommended to have a follow up with a PCR test to confirm the result. We always recommend our members to have a swab if they have symptoms. 

The data for the tests looks very reassuring. Currently several manufacturers can produce the kit, but right now they haven’t been approved by Public Health England.

What could the rapid antigen tests be used for?

  • Members and their households. Please discuss this on a case by case basis with your dedicated GP. 
  • Corporate testing

The rapid antigen tests may come in useful as a quick in-house test to help businesses begin to get back to normal. The tests will still need to be administered by a health care professional or a member of the Linbury Doctors team.

If corporate testing is sis of interest as a business need or for household testing, please contact your personal doctor. info@linburydoctors.co.uk 

What the rapid antigen cannot be used for: 

Travel: The rapid test isn’t the right test to obtain a travel certificate. If you do need a travel certificate, the PCR swab is the test you need.

Prior to hospital procedures

If you need a COVID test before you attend a hospital procedure, a PCR swab is the test you need.

Contact with positive cases and reduction of isolation times

If your rapid test has a negative result, you should still self-isolate if you’ve been asked to do so. Any advice made by Public Health England still needs to be followed.

WATCH OUT FOR….You may find some places offering these new rapid antigen tests for a low price. Always make sure any rapid tests you have are CE approved and are given by a registered healthcare professional.

CALL YOUR PERSONAL GP TO DISCUSS- We are always happy to chat to you… 

At Linbury Doctors we are now able to offer the rapid COVID antigen test. Our members can have the rapid antigen test as an addition to our same day PHE approved PCR swabs. We do still recommend that you have the PCR swab after a rapid test. We are happy to discuss this on a case by case basis. 

However we still recommend following Government guidelines. 

The COVID Vaccine.

The COVID vaccine that has been in the news over the last week is being developed by Pfizer and BioNtTech. The final phase of the trial has been completed and shows that the vaccine is 95% effective. 

The new COVID-19 vaccine that is going to give us back normality and let us live life as we once knew it is coming soon. Patients have been asking us about this COVID vaccine and if we can deliver it. 

About the vaccine.

The Pfizer vaccine needs to be stored at minus 70 degrees celsius. The logistics of how this will be stored pre-vaccination is still uncertain, but the government is currently planning how to roll this out effectively. The vaccine needs to be delivered in two doses 4-6 weeks apart. 

The medication is drawn up in a vial; unlike the influenza vaccine, which comes readily drawn up to be delivered. It needs to be checked by two healthcare professionals before being administered. The patient then needs to be observed for fifteen minutes to look out for any immediate side-effects. However, better candidates are likely to be those being developed by the US drug company, Moderna, and Astra-Zenica being developed in conjunction with the University of Oxford. 

Both are expected to be rolled out in the next few months and are also expected to be at least 90% effective but are easier to store. The Moderna vaccine is looking to be 95% effective, but the final data from the trials is not out yet. This vaccine has an easier storage solution and is likely to be available in Spring 2021 in the UK.  

When will the vaccine be available?

As these are all new vaccines, we do not yet know the full extent of any side-effects, let alone how long immunity might last, though scientists are hopeful it will be a fair few months. We do, however, know that the Government are, already, preparing for national vaccination programmes. The vaccination programme is expected to be rolled out to NHS workers, those over 85 and care home workers first.  How it is to be distributed thereafter is yet to be decided. 

We will be making assessments as to how this could be delivered safely at home. This will depend upon how easy it is to obtain the vaccine privately, any complications in respect of storage and the possible side-effects.

How we will update our members.

We aim to keep our members updated regularly with information. We are in regular talks with our colleagues in the NHS and private GPs in London about the vaccine and how it can be delivered safely and effectively. 

Drop us a line at info@linburydoctors.co.uk if you would like any more information.

Flu Jabs in 2020/2021

2020 has been quite a year with lots of changes in the way we work and live. So, what is different this year with the flu jab?

By all accounts it does seem as though the ‘second wave’ of COVID-19 is upon us and with predictions of cases rising over the winter months, it is more important than ever to have your flu jab.

The flu jab will not protect you against COVID, but it will lower your risk of developing flu and serious complications. Flu can lead to hospital admissions and secondary complications. It can weaken your immune system making you more susceptible to a more severe case of COVID-19 infection.

In addition, preventing a rise in cases of flu can help protect the NHS during the winter months.

Who is eligible for the Flu vaccine on the NHS free of charge?

  • Adults 65 and over
  • Anyone with an underlying condition such as COPD, bronchitis, asthma, emphysema, diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, spleen problems (like sickle cell), liver disease or a chronic neurological disease like multiple sclerosis or cerebral palsy
  • Anyone with a weakened immune system as the result of conditions such as HIV and AIDS, or medication such as steroid tablets or chemotherapy
  • Anyone who receives a carer’s allowance, or you are the main carer for an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if you fall ill
  • Anyone who has a learning disability and are on their GP learning disability register.
  • Pregnant women
  • People living with someone who’s at high risk from coronavirus (on the NHS shielded patient list)
  • Children aged 2 and 3 on 31 August 2020
  • Children in primary school
  • Children in year 7 (secondary school)
  • Frontline health or social care workers

These categories will be prioritised in the first round of flu vaccines and are eligible to receive the vaccine free of charge.

Why are there different types of flu vaccines and what is the difference?

The quadrivalent vaccine (designed to protect against four different flu viruses, including two influenza A viruses and two influenza B viruses) contains 4 strains of the flu virus. This particular flu vaccine is offered to patients under the age of 65. This vaccine comes in a strain which has egg product in it and one which doesn’t.

The nasal flu vaccine is also a quadrivalent vaccine and is offered to children from the age of 2-17 years of age. A lot of these are offered in schools as part of a national immunisation programme.

The trivalent vaccine has 3 strains of the flu virus and is offered to the over 65s. This flu vaccine is thought to boost the immune response to fight flu.

It is not known why older adults’ immune systems don’t respond so well to the flu vaccines, therefore it is even more important for children and healthcare workers to get vaccinated to decrease the spread of the flu virus.

https://vk.ovg.ox.ac.uk/vk/inactivated-flu-vaccine

As a member of the Linbury practice, you will be offered a flu vaccine as part of your membership.

Please give us a call if you would like more information about our membership – 0333 050 7338.