For patients attending appointments at St Mary’s Surgery or collecting medication from our dispensary at 37 St Mary’s Street there is free car parking at the rear of the surgery building. Please only use this when attending the surgery.
The Surgery car park will be locked outside of surgery opening hours.
Care Quality Commission
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) makes sure hospitals, care homes, dental and GP surgeries, and all other care services in England provide people with safe, effective, compassionate and high-quality care, and encourages them to make improvements where possible.
They do this by inspecting services and publishing the results on their website: www.cqc.org.uk
You can use the results to help you make better decisions about the care you, or someone you care for, receives.
Our CQC Inspection
Our practice is inspected by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to ensure we are meeting essential standards of quality and safety.
It is important that we know if you are a carer so that we can make sure you receive information, services and the help that is available. Please contact our Patient Services Team to find out how the surgery can support you in your carer role.
Find out more about further help and support available to you if you are a carer.
Please note – COVID vaccines and carers:
The current government regulations regarding carers receiving the COVID vaccination defines carers as ‘those who are eligible for carer’s allowance, or those who are the sole or primary carer of an elderly or disabled person who is at increased risk of COVID mortality and therefore clinically vulnerable’.
To ensure your records are coded as a ‘carer’ we need the following information:
- Are you a paid carer and if so who employs you?
- Do you receive the carer’s allowance?
- Who do you care for?
- Are you the sole or primary carer of an elderly or disabled person?
- Are they registered at the surgery and have they given you permission to contact us on their behalf?
- If you became unwell would the person you care for need outside support?
If you do not fit these criteria then we are unable to code you as a carer on our medical records system.
Change of personal details
It is important that personal details on medical records are kept up-to-date. If you have changed your name, address, phone number or marital status, please do let the surgery know as soon as possible, so your records can be accurately maintained.
If your name has changed due to marriage or by Deed Poll, please provide a copy of the relevant documentation to be added to your records.
If you have changed address, please check if you are still within our practice area boundary.
You can also update your next of kin, carer details or responsibilities, and other changes, such as Power of Attorney details, too. We will happily record these changes to your medical record.
If you have online access to your record – via SystmOnline or the NHS App – you can update your personal details yourself, otherwise please contact the surgery.
If you move away from our practice boundary area, you have 30 days to register with a new GP practice before we deduct your medical records.
Complaints about the services offered by St Mary’s Surgery are thankfully rare, but we are aware that things can go wrong resulting in a patient feeling that they have a genuine cause for complaint. These are always taken seriously and dealt with fairly and as quickly as possible.
Complaints should be addressed to the practice manager.
See our full complaints policy.
Confidentiality is the cornerstone of healthcare and central to the work of everyone employed in General Practice. All information about patients is confidential: from the most sensitive diagnosis, to the fact of having visited the surgery or being registered at the practice.
The duty of confidentiality owed to a person under 16 is as great as the duty owed to any other person.
All patients can expect that their personal information will not be disclosed without their permission other than in the most exceptional circumstances, when somebody is at grave risk of serious harm.
Responsibilities of practice staff
All health professionals must follow their professional codes of practice and the law. This means that they must make every effort to protect confidentiality. It also means that no identifiable information about a patient is passed to anyone or any agency without the express permission of that patient, except when this is essential for providing care or necessary to protect somebody’s health, safety or wellbeing. The patient is entitled to refuse to give their consent for disclosure.
All health professionals are individually accountable for their own actions. They should also work together as a team to ensure that standards of confidentiality are upheld, and that improper disclosures are avoided.
Additionally, the GP as an employer:
- Is responsible for ensuring that everybody employed by the practice understands the need for, and maintains, confidentiality;
- Has overall responsibility for ensuring that systems and mechanisms to protect confidentiality are in place; and
- Has vicarious liability for the actions of those working in the practice – including the health professionals and non-clinical staff.
Standards of confidentiality apply to all health professionals, administrative and ancillary staff – including receptionists, secretaries, practice managers, cleaners and maintenance staff who are bound by contracts of employment to maintain confidentiality – and also to students or others observing practice.
They must not reveal to anybody outside the practice personal information they learn in the course of their work, or due to their presence in the surgery, without the patient’s consent.
Nor will they discuss with colleagues any aspect of a patient’s attendance at the surgery in a way that might allow identification of the patient, unless to do so is necessary for that patient’s care.
If disclosure is necessary
If a patient or another person is at grave risk of serious harm which disclosure to an appropriate person would prevent, the relevant health professional will counsel the patient about the benefits of disclosure. If the patient refuses to allow disclosure, the health professional can take advice from colleagues within the practice, or from a professional, regulatory or defence body, in order to decide whether a disclosure without consent is justified to protect the patient or another person. If a decision is taken to disclose, the patient should always be informed before the disclosure is made, unless to do so could be dangerous.
If a member of staff is faced with such a request, any such decisions should be shared with another member of the practice team and the matter should be discussed in the first instance with the relevant team leader, for onward referral to the Practice Manager as needed.
Any decision to disclose information to protect health, safety or wellbeing will be based on the degree of current or potential harm, not on the age of the patient.
Author: T Davies
Date of review: 26 May 2023
Next review due: 26 May 2025
Extended GP access
Weekday evening appointments are available at St Mary’s every Thursday and alternate Wednesdays between 18:30 and 20:00. These clinics are run by the Ely North and South Primary Care Network (of which St Mary’s is a member). These appointments are non-urgent and routine and can be booked with a GP, Practice Nurse, Clinical Pharmacist and Health and Wellbeing Coach. Please note that these appointments will be with locally based clinicians, but not always with clinicians from St Mary’s.
To book, change or cancel a weekday evening appointment, please contact our Patient Services Team.
Feedback and comments
We make every effort to give the best service possible to everyone who attends St Mary’s Surgery, and welcome comments and feedback to help improve the services we provide.
We would like to hear from you if you have a suggestion on how we can do things better and improve patients’ experiences. We would also like to hear from you if you are pleased with the care and service you have received from the surgery. We will let staff involved know and share the good practice across our teams.
We are located on site at the Princess of Wales Hospital, Lynn Road, Ely CB6 1DN
You can find the surgery in the portacabin building at the front of the hospital site. It is clearly signposted and there is plenty of car parking.
If you are coming by public transport, the no 9 bus from Market Street in Ely stops at the hospital. Check bus times here.
To generate the up-to-date bus times, type Market Street Ely in the ‘From’ box and use our temporary postcode CB61DN in the ‘To’ box and select preferred time.
Our phone number remains the same: 01353 663434.
If you require reception, select option 1 from the phone menu and option 3 if you require dispensary.
We expect to be back at 37 St Mary’s Street by the end of June 2023.
Home visits by GPs are only available for patients who are housebound because of severe illness or disability.
If a home visit is thought to be required by a patient, relative or carer please contact the surgery using askmyGP or telephone the surgery. You will receive a telephone call back from a doctor or nurse to discuss the clinical problem who will then arrange for the most appropriate action.
Please remember that several patients can be seen in the practice in the time it takes to make one home visit. So please help us to help you and our other patients by visiting the surgery whenever possible. At the surgery your GP will have access to all your medical records and there are better facilities for examining and treating patients.
We cannot undertake home visits for reasons of convenience, lack of transport, or simply because a patient is a resident in a residential care home, sheltered accommodation or nursing home. We will be happy to provide you with details of local taxi firms and volunteer car services, if required.
Don’t forget you can call NHS 111 for medical help and advice, or in an emergency dial 999.
In times of bereavement
We understand that this can be an upsetting time. The following provides a practical list of actions that need to be undertaken when a death occurs either at home or in hospital.
If death occurs at home
- Telephone the surgery and inform reception and a doctor will visit to confirm that death has taken place.
- If the death is unexpected and the doctor is not able to explain the cause of death, they may need to inform the police and the coroner.
- Once the death is confirmed, contact a funeral director.
- The Medical Certificate of Death needs to be completed by a doctor who has been involved in the patient’s care and has seen them in the period prior to their death. There may be a delay if the doctor is not working or is on leave, but we will endeavour to keep you informed.
- Since the COVID-19 pandemic in April 2020, the Medical Certificate of Death is now emailed to the Registrar.
- Book an appointment with the Registrar to register the death by phoning 0345 045 1363. You will need to tell the Registrar:
- the person’s full name at time of death and any names previously used, including maiden surname
- the person’s date and place of birth (town and county if born in the UK, and country, if born abroad)
- their last address
- their occupation
- the full name, date of birth and occupation of a surviving spouse or civil partner
- if they were getting a state pension or any other state benefit.
- When you register a death, the Registrar will normally issue a Certificate for Burial or Cremation (green form) for you to give to your funeral director, who will look after the necessary arrangements for the funeral. The Registrar will also issue a Certificate of Registration of Death (form BD8) which you will need to fill out and return if the deceased was receiving a state pension. The Registrar will also enquire as to the number of certified copies you require for dealing with the deceased’s finances (a fee is payable for each copy).
If the death occurs in hospital
- Contact a funeral director to inform him his services are required.
- Follow steps 4 onwards.
Your funeral director will usually liaise directly with the surgery regarding the additional certification required.
More information about registering a death.
Infection Control Statement (2022)
This annual statement will be generated each year in accordance with the requirements of The Health and Social Care Act 2008 Code of Practice on the prevention and control of infections and related guidance. It summarises: –
Any infection transmission incidents and any action taken (these will have been reported in accordance
with our Significant Event procedure).
Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) lead
The St Mary’s Surgery Lead for Infection Prevention and Control is Carly Loop (Clinical Nurse Manager). The
Infection Prevention Control Lead is supported by Tony Davies (Practice Manager).
Annual infection control training is a mandatory requirement for all surgery staff. Carly Loop last updated
her infection control training on 24/08/2022
Known learning events related to IPC during 2022
Learning events (which may involve examples of good practice as well as challenging events) are investigated in detail to see what can be learnt and to indicate changes that might lead to future improvements. All learning events are reviewed annually during staff clinical governance training. Significant events (where actual harm is identified to have been caused) are investigated in the same manner.
In the past year there has been no learning or significant events raised that related to infection control at St Mary’s Surgery.
Infection Prevention Audit and Actions
The Annual Infection Prevention and Control audit was completed by Carly Loop in March 2022, coinciding with a voluntary site visit from Helen Wickenden, lead nurse for IPC for Cambridge & Peterborough ICS. There were no concerns or recommendations made as a result of this visit.
St Mary’s Surgery undertook the following audits in 2022, and plan the same for 2023:-
Annual Infection Prevention and Control audit Quarterly handwashing audits
Quarterly Cytology audits
Risk assessments are carried out so that best practice can be established and then followed. In the last year, the following risk assessments were carried out / reviewed: –
Legionella (Water) Risk Assessment: – Weekly and monthly checks are conducted in both the temporary surgery location at the POW site and also the administrative houses on St Mary’s Street to ensure that the water supply does not pose a risk to patients, visitors, or staff.
Immunisation: – St Mary’s Surgery ensures that our clinical staff are up to date with their Hepatitis B immunisations. All surgery staff are offered annual influenza vaccination and any COVID 19 vaccinations as recommended by the UK Government.
Covid19: – All staff in patient facing roles wear facemasks to offer protection to our patients. Patients are encouraged but not mandated to wear facemasks, per the Government guidance issued in April 2022. PPE is procured weekly from central government supply and is readily available for all staff to use. These provisions include gloves, aprons, face shields and full body gowns.
Cleaning of the premises:
The surgery is cleaned by a professional cleaning company following the end of each working day. Clinical staff are responsible for cleaning their own working areas between patient interactions during their working day.
Annual Infection control training is a mandatory requirement for all surgery staff. Our current compliance rate for all staff to be up to date with their training is 78%
All Infection Prevention and Control related policies are in date for this year. Policies relating to Infection Prevention and Control are available to all staff, are reviewed, and updated bi-annually, and all are amended on an on-going basis as current advice, guidance, and legislation changes.
Annual review completion date:
Information about the Freedom of Information – Publication Scheme
The Freedom of Information Act (Scotland) 2002 obliges the practice to produce a Publication Scheme. A Publication Scheme is a guide to the ‘classes’ of information the practice intends to routinely make available.
This scheme is available from reception.
Integrated Care System
St Mary’s Surgery is part of the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Integrated Care System (ICS). This ICS is one of the largest in the country covering a patient population of over 990,000 people.
The ICS is responsible for planning and buying local NHS services, such as hospital care and in the community, as well as ensuring that the best possible care and treatment is delivered to patients.
For more information, please visit the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Integrated Care System website.
Interpreting services are available to all our patients and we can arrange for an interpreter to attend your appointment with a GP or nurse, if required.
If you need an interpreter, please add this to your askmyGP request, or ask a member of the Patient Services Team when you book your appointment.
If you have a hearing problem, we have British Sign Language (BSL) interpreters available for clinical appointments.
BSL is a language in its own right and as with verbal interpreting, our interpreters abide by a strict code of ethics, covering impartiality, accuracy and confidentiality.
All interpreting services used by St Mary’s Surgery are procured through the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Integrated Care System.
Medication Requests for Flying (Diazepam)
We are occasionally asked by patients to prescribe sedating medication for flying.
We regret that we are not able to facilitate these requests on the grounds of patient safety and our need to prioritise the delivery of NHS care on the basis of patients’ clinical needs.
Sedating medication, e.g. benzodiazepines such as diazepam, can render someone either paradoxically aggressive, or less able to follow instructions in an emergency, thus putting crew and other passengers at risk.
Sleeping tablets similarly have no indication for flying, and again could make a passenger difficult to rouse or transfer if there was a genuine in-flight emergency. Often passengers mix these medications with alcohol, with deleterious consequences. We would not wish you to to be barred from a flight or face prosecution, or find yourself incapacitated due to the unpredictable effects of said medication. The drug driving legislation which came into effect in recent years would also potentially prohibit onward driving from an airport.
Flight anxiety should be treated by Cognitive Behavioural Therapy – a form of counselling, which has long lasting benefits and is safe. Airline carriers offer excellent courses for free, so do speak with your flight provider to arrange to go on a course well in advance of when you know you will be flying.
It is not within the remit of the NHS to render someone fit to travel on a voluntary holiday or business trip. We acknowledge there may be occasion when you have previously received a prescription for this purpose. We regret that we will be unable to agree to such requests henceforth. This is a joint decision, unanimously made by all senior clinical staff within the practice.
Patients are reminded that they are able to arrange a consultation at a private travel clinic should they wish to pursue the option of in-flight medication further, but we cannot accommodate their request and so would politely ask that they respect this universal practice policy from 25th April 2023.
We have been supported in the drafting of this policy by Cambridgeshire Local Medical Committee.
Medicines not currently prescribed on the NHS
Here at St Mary’s Surgery your doctor, nurse or pharmacist will generally not give you a prescription for medication that is available to buy over-the-counter (OTC) from local pharmacies or supermarkets.
This covers medicines or treatments for a range of minor health conditions including cough and cold treatments, eye drops, headache tablets, laxatives, sun cream lotions, vitamins and probiotics. All these medicines are widely available from supermarkets and pharmacies at reasonable cost.
Patients are encouraged to keep a small supply of simple treatments in their own medicine cabinet so they are able to manage minor ailments at home.
By reducing the amount it spends on OTC medicines, the NHS can give priority to treatments for people with more serious conditions, such as cancer, diabetes and mental health problems.
Named accountable GP
All patients at St Mary’s Surgery have been allocated a named accountable GP.
If you wish to know the name of your accountable GP, please ask at reception next time you are at the surgery. You can also look on your repeat prescription to find out who your named GP is.
Where a patient expresses a preference for a particular GP, St Mary’s will make reasonable efforts to accommodate this request.
Having a named GP does not prevent you seeing any other doctor in the practice. Your named GP will not be available at all times and if your needs are urgent, you may need to discuss them with an alternative doctor. For continuity of care, especially for ongoing conditions, we recommend that you see the same doctor each time where possible.
National data opt-out
Your data matters to the NHS. Information about your health and care can be used to help improve not only your individual care, but can help speed up diagnoses, plan local and regional health services and research new treatments.
The NHS is committed to keeping patient information safe and always being clear about how it is used.
You can choose whether your confidential patient information is used. On 25 May 2018, the national data opt-out programme was introduced, enabling patients to opt-out from the use of their data for research or planning purposes.
Find out how you can opt-out.
Or find out more about how your information is used.
Out of hours emergency service
When the surgery is closed and in a genuine medical emergency only, patients should telephone NHS 111.
When the practice is closed, any calls to the surgery (01353 663434) will receive a recorded message advising of the surgery opening hours and to hang up and dial 111 in a genuine medical emergency.
All 111 calls will be assessed and either:
- Medical advice given
- You will be referred to a healthcare professional for further advice
- Arrangements made for you to be seen by a healthcare professional at a local centre (Princess of Wales Hospital, Ely or North Cambridgeshire Hospital, Wisbech or Doddington Hospital)
- Arrangements made for you to be visited at home if you are bedbound by your illness or genuinely housebound
- A 999 ambulance despatched, if appropriate.
The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Clinical Commissioning Group is responsible for commissioning these services.
Patient dignity policy
This policy sets out the St Mary’s Surgery provision to ensure that patients are afforded privacy and dignity, and are treated respectfully, in all appropriate circumstances where there is the potential for embarrassment or for the patient to feel ‘ill at ease’.
The requirement to respect patients is the responsibility of all staff, not just those in direct clinical contact with the patient.
St Mary’s Surgery aims to provide you with the highest quality healthcare. To do this we must keep records about you, your health and the care or treatment that we have provided for you or plan to provide for you.
These records are your ‘health care record’, and may be stored in paper form or on computer and electronic systems and may include personal data.
What is personal data?
Personal data is information about you, such as:
- Basic details – name, address, date of birth, NHS number, contact details, next of kin, etc.
- Sensitive personal data – details about contact we have had with you, eg clinical visits, notes and reports about your health, records about any treatment and care you have received, and test results, eg blood tests or x-rays.
As a healthcare provider, St Mary’s Surgery is permitted to collect, store, use and share this information under Data Protection Legislation, which has a specific section related to healthcare data.
Here are some examples of what we do with your information
- Refer you to other healthcare providers when you need other services or tests
- Share samples with laboratories for testing (eg blood samples)
- Share test results with hospitals or community services
- Allow out of hours GPs or clinicians to look at your health record when you have an appointment
- Send prescriptions to a pharmacy
- Share reports with a coroner
- Receive reports of appointments you have attended elsewhere, such as with the community nurse, or if you have stayed in hospital.
What else do we do with your information?
As well as activities related directly to your care, we also use information in ways which allow us to check that care is safe and provide data for the improvement and planning of services.
The surgery is registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office as a Data Controller and our registration number is Z7309438.
St Mary’s surgery takes your privacy very seriously. If you have any questions or concerns in relation to the way we manage your personal information, please contact the Practice Manager.
Publication of earnings
All GP practices are required to declare the mean earnings (eg average) for GPs working to deliver NHS services to patients at each practice.
The average pay for GPs working at St Mary’s Surgery in the last financial year before tax and national insurance is £67,471.
This is for 2 full time GPs and 8 part time GPs, who worked in the practice for more than six months.
It should be noted that the prescribed method for calculating earnings is potentially misleading because it takes no account of how much time doctors spend working in the practice, and should not be used to form any judgement about GP earnings, nor to make any comparison with any other practice.
St Mary’s Surgery immediate and long-term equipment fund is called SMILE. Donations – which are very thankfully received – are deposited in this fund.
This enables the practice to purchase items of equipment which benefit our patients, such as nebulisers for asthma patients, glucometers for diabetic patients, sonic aids for antenatal patients, dermatoscopes for dermatological conditions, ECG machines, defibrillators and so on.
If you would like to make a donation, please contact the assistant practice manager.
Staff training is important to us. We regularly review our staff to ensure they have the right qualifications, skills, knowledge and experience to do their jobs.
We also cover mandatory training for all staff including basic life support, infection control, fire safety, and safeguarding. For our clinical staff, we offer specific training appropriate to their role, including immunisation, cervical smear and long-term conditions updates.
Every couple of months, the surgery closes for whole practice training. These afternoons enable all our staff to be brought up-to-date on all they need to know – for the benefit of our patients.
You can find details of the dates, throughout the year, that we are closed for training on our home page.
When the surgery is closed, please call 111 if you have a medical concern. Call 999 in a true emergency situation.
Subject Access Request
Under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), everybody has the right to obtain a copy of their personal data. Personal data in relation to the surgery means your medical records, and an individual is only entitled to their own personal data, and not to information relating to other people (unless the information is also about them or they are acting on behalf of someone). Under special circumstances, some information may be withheld.
You do not need to give a reason to see your personal data and access to the majority of your medical records can be provided through SystmOnline, if you are registered. This is the primary means of accessing your information and we encourage all patients to register for online access.
Where access is not possible, then patients can make a Subject Access Request (SAR) to the practice. We ask that you make your request in writing, where possible and be as specific as possible about the information you require.
The practice will provide the SAR information you require free of charge within one calendar month of the date of your request. However if your request is more complex or a number of requests have been made by you, the turnaround time might be extended and we may charge a reasonable fee where the request is viewed as excessive or additional copies are required.
Making a Subject Access Request
Patients must provide proof of identity when making a SAR.
An individual making a request for his/her own records
- A copy of one of the following – birth certificate, passport or driving licence plus a copy of proof of address, such as utility bill
An individual making a request on behalf of an individual (acting as a representative)
- One item showing proof of the patient’s identity and one item showing proof of the representative’s identity.
Summary Care Record
What is a Summary Care Record?
A Summary Care Record (SCR) is a short summary of your medical records. It tells other health and care staff who care for you important information about the medicines you take, any allergies you have and any bad reactions to medicines that you have had.
Giving access to your SCR to health professionals away from your usual GP (for example in an emergency, at out-patient clinics or when you’re on holiday) means that they can give you a better patient experience and ensure you are given the right medicines and treatment at the point of care. Only healthcare staff involved in your care can see your SCR.
Your SCR also includes your name, address, date of birth and your unique NHS number to help identify you correctly.
As a patient registered with a GP in England, you will automatically have an SCR created unless you opt out. To do so, you need to let your GP practice know by filling in and returning a summary care opt out form.
Regardless of your past decisions about your Summary Care Record consent preferences, you can change your mind at any time.
Children under 16 years
A patient or guardian can request to opt out children under 16. Ultimately it is the GPs decision whether to create the records or not, because of their duty of care to the child. If you are the parent or guardian of a child under 16 and feel that they are able to understand, then you should make this information available to them.
Violence and abuse
St Mary’s Surgery fully supports the NHS Zero Tolerance Policy. The aim of this policy is to tackle the increasing problem of violence against staff working in the NHS. We aim to treat our patients courteously at all times and expect our patients to treat our staff in a similarly respectful way.
St Mary’s Surgery staff have the right to care for others without fear of being attacked or abused and we have a zero tolerance policy to any threatening, abusive or violent behaviour against any of our staff or patients.
Patients using threatening or violent behaviour to GPs or any other person on the practice premises may be removed from the patient list with immediate effect.