27th March 2020
Existing patients of the practice will now be able to access bulk billed telephone consultations with their usual GP. Patients simply telephone the practice and book an appointment time. Your doctor will then call you at the designated time. This is suitable for patients who require a repeat prescription, referrals, need to discuss their results or who would like counselling. Face to face consultations are still required for immunisations, dressings and if the doctor deems it necessary over the phone.
At the moment only private flu vaccines are available for people aged 5-65, these are $15.00. You need to be well in order to receive the flu vaccine. We are conducting flu clinics, aimed at minimising your exposure to the practice premises- please call the surgery for an appointment and further details.
23rd March 2020
PRIVATE flu vaccines are now available at the surgery. Vaccines for people over 65 are not in yet, we expect these to be available about Mid April. Children under 5 will also be able to receive a free flu vaccine when this becomes available- again this is expected around Mid April. If you are well and have had a previous flu shot you may like to book in to attend our flu clinic. In order to maintain safe distancing we will be running this separately to the normal general practice. Please call the surgery for times and more information.
18th March 2020
While people over 65 years of age can buy vaccines suitable for the younger population, the FREE vaccine they receive from the doctor has been formulated especially to be more potent. We are expecting deliveries of this vaccine in April- please be patient. Also please note that children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years are eligible for a FREE vaccine through their doctor.
16th March 2020
Testing still remains available only to people who have traveled and have symptoms or who are close contacts of positive COVID people and exhibit symptoms. If you have traveled or are a close contact of an infected person then self isolate for 14 days- if you develop symptoms call the surgery for advice and to organise testing.
All online appointments have been temporarily suspended. Please phone the surgery for an appointment. Also, in the interests of public health, please do not attend the surgery without calling first.
Due to a shortage of masks, if you think you have a flu-like illness and have a mask, please wear it into your appointment.
Flu vaccine are expected to arrive Mid April- watch this space.
For more information on isolation see:
11th March 2020 Coronavirus Update
Advice re the coronavirus is changing daily. As at 9/3/2020:
We have been advised to only refer patients for testing if they meet specific criteria as resources are limited.
Some schools have asked for testing of their students even though they don’t meet specific criteria. Due to high demand, pathology labs have asked you to ring beforehand for information particularly about wearing a mask and they will see you by appointment only. Presently there is a wait time for testing of approximately 2-3 days and then it takes a further 2-3 days before you get a result. You are asked to stay in self isolation until you receive your results. Hornsby Hospital Emergency Department is also testing now. We currently do not have testing equipment at the surgery.
In the interests of public health, it is important you phone the surgery for an appointment. Please do not attend the surgery without an appointment and DO NOT BOOK ONLINE. Our nurses will be triaging patients over the phone. Appointments will be scheduled at specific times so that babies and patients at increased risk, do not become exposed. If you have flu-like symptoms, stop in the hallway and phone for a mask, staff will then direct you to the isolation area. If you need an urgent appointment- then you are too sick to attend the surgery and will need to present to Accident and Emergency. In this instance, please call 000 for an ambulance and advise them that you may have been exposed to coronavirus.
If you have a mild illness you will still need to self isolate as others around you may develop a more serious version of the illness. Please follow the isolation guide on the following website:
For more information:
You can also call the healthdirect helpline on 1800 022 222 to speak with a registered nurse
For general information on the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), call the Australian Government’s Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080
For the latest updates on COVID-19 in Australia, visit the Department of Health website.
CORONAVIRUS- WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Some coronaviruses cause illness in humans and others cause illness in animals, such as bats, camels, and civets. Human coronaviruses generally cause mild illness, such as the common cold.
COVID-19 is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans. It was first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China, where it has caused a large and ongoing outbreak. It has since spread more widely in China and several other countries.
- Hong Kong
- South Korea
If you have travelled to any of the countries of interest you should stay at home and isolate yourself for 14 days after you have left the country and monitor for symptoms. When travelling home to start isolation use personal transport, such as a car, to minimise exposure to others
If you develop a fever, a cough, sore throat or shortness of breath within 14 days of travel to an affected area, you should call your GP, emergency department or call healthdirect 1800 022 222 tell the person where you have travelled and seek medical attention as soon as possible.
It is important to phone ahead so that the practice or emergency department can make appropriate preparations and protect others.
The time between when a person is exposed to the virus and when symptoms first appear is typically 5 to 6 days, although it may range from 2 to 14 days. For this reason, people who might have been in contact with a confirmed case are being asked to self-isolate for 14 days.
Patients may have fever, cough, runny nose, shortness of breath. Other early symptoms include chills, body aches, sore throat, and muscle pain.
In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia with severe acute respiratory distress.
The infection period for the virus will vary from person to person. Mild symptoms in an otherwise healthy individual may resolve over just a few days. For an individual with other ongoing health issues, recovery may take weeks and in severe cases could be potentially fatal.
If you have been identified as a contact of a person with confirmed COVID-19 infection in Australia, the local public health unit will contact you with advice. You need to isolate yourself at home for 14 days after contact with the infected person, and monitor your health and report any symptoms.
Human coronavirus strains are usually spread from an infected person to other people close to that person through contaminated droplets spread by coughing or sneezing, or by contact with contaminated hands, surfaces or objects.
Person to person spread of coronaviruses generally occurs between people who are close contacts. A close contact is typically someone who has been face to face for at least 15 minutes, or been in the same closed space for at least 2 hours, with a person that was infectious. Close contacts will need to be isolated as well.
If your contact with the person was less than this, there is a much smaller risk of you being infected. However, as a precaution you must still monitor your health until 14 days after you were last exposed to the infectious person. If you develop symptoms including a fever and/or respiratory signs, please call ahead to talk to a doctor or call healthdirect on 1800 022 222. Tell your doctor that you have been in contact with someone with COVID-19.
How can you prevent it and what you can do to stop giving it to others?
- Practice good hygiene – Clean your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds, or use an alcohol-based hand rub.
- Practice cough etiquette (keep away from other people, cover coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues or a fixed elbow and clean your hands.
- Avoid close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms.
- Make sure you stay in isolation at home if you are sick. Don’t go to public places including work, school, childcare, university or public gatherings. Only people who usually live with you should be in the home.
- If you are sharing your home with others, you should stay in a different room from other people or be separated as much as possible. Wear a surgical mask when you are in the same room as another person. Use a separate bathroom, if available.
- Make sure you do not share a room with people who are at risk of severe disease, such as the elderly and those who have diabetes, heart, lung or kidney conditions, and diabetes.
- If you live in a private house, it is safe for you to go into your garden or courtyard. If you live in an apartment or are staying in a hotel, it is also safe for you to visit the garden but you should wear a surgical mask to minimise risk to others and move quickly through any common areas.
- Visitors who do not have an essential need to be in the home should not visit while you are isolating.
- If you need groceries or medicines (including prescription medicines), ask a family member or friend (who is not in isolation) to deliver them to your home or shop for groceries online. To prevent infecting other people, make sure you wear a mask when receiving a delivery or have the groceries left at your door.
- Regularly wash surfaces that are frequently touched such as door handles, light switches, kitchen and bathroom areas.
- If you think a surface may be infected, clean it with detergent first, then a common household disinfectant to kill the virus. Clean your hands afterwards with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water. Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, or nose.
- If you need medical attention, it is important to phone ahead and describe your symptoms so that the practice or emergency department can make appropriate preparations and protect others.
- If you have serious symptoms such as difficulty breathing: Call 000, ask for an ambulance and notify the officers of your recent travel or close contact history.
- If you are sick, wear a surgical face mask when seeking medical advice or ask for one when you arrive, to reduce the risk of transmitting COVID-19 to anyone else.
- Face masks are not recommended for the general population.
People with underlying illnesses, including those with diabetes, chronic lung disease, kidney failure, people with suppressed immune systems and older people are more vulnerable to respiratory disease and are at a higher risk of serious disease.
There is no specific treatment for COVID-19. Early diagnosis and general supportive care are important. Most of the time, symptoms will resolve on their own. People who have serious disease with complications may be cared for in hospital.
Being in isolation can be stressful and boring. Suggestions include:
- Keep in touch with family members and friends via telephone, email or social media.
- Learn about coronavirus and talk with others.
- Reassure young children using age-appropriate language.
- Where possible, keep up normal daily routines, such as eating and exercise.
- Arrange to work from home.
- Ask your child’s school to supply assignments or homework by post or email.
- Do things that help you relax and use isolation as an opportunity to do activities you don’t usually have time for.
How can I prepare for possible coronavirus?
Make sure you have enough medication for one month
Get a flu vaccine this year, currently these are scheduled to come out in April.
If you are over 65 get the pneumonia vaccine if you have not had one previously.
In the event of a serious outbreak, postpone any routine check ups.
If you have a fever, sore throat, runny nose or chest symptoms – phone your GP practice for advice
Festive Season Opening Hours 2019
|Monday 23rd December||8:30am – 6.00pm|
|Tuesday 24th December
|8:30am – 4.30pm|
|Wednesday 25th December
|Thursday 26th December
|Friday 27th December||8:30am – 5.00pm|
|Saturday 28th December||8:30am – 12.00pm|
|Sunday 29th December||CLOSED|
|Monday 30th December||8:30am – 5.00pm|
|Tuesday 31st December
(New Years Eve)
|8:30am – 4.30pm|
|Wednesday 1st January
(New Years Day)
|Thursday 2nd January||Business as usual
8:30am – 6pm
In an emergency please phone 000
For all other after-hours medical care please phone:
The National Home Doctor Service – Ph: 13 SICK or 13 7425
The Doctors and staff at Florence Street Family Practice
wish you a safe and happy holiday season!
The Surgery will be closed on Saturday 12th October for a computer upgrade. Please be aware, this will also affect online appointments. We will be back as usual by Monday 14th October. We apologise for the inconvenience.
Just an update, Dr Das at Florence St family practice offers Iron infusions for patients with iron deficiency and Implanon and Mirena IUD insertions and removals. Patients are advised to make an appointment for a consultation to discuss pros and cons prior to any procedure.
January 2019 Happy New Year to all at Florence St Family Practice!
Just reminding you, that a My Health Record will be created for every Australian who has not opted out by 31 January 2019. If you wish to opt out, follow the following link: www.myhealthrecord.gov.au/for-you-your-family/opt-out-my-health-record (you will need a Medicare card and another form of identification e.g. driver’s licence)
Please note: your My Health Record is NOT a complete medical file. Your doctors’ information will NOT be uploaded automatically. It will require your presence at a consultation and your consent for specific information to be uploaded. You can also remove things that have been uploaded if you change your mind later – making it less accurate.
If you wish to learn more about your My Health Record, talk to your doctor or view brochures / fact sheets at: www.myhealthrecord.gov.au/for-healthcare-professionals/howtos/support-your-patients
Thank you to all those who participated in our survey.
Overall Satisfaction with our general practice was 95% (an improvement of 3% since our 2015 survey).
Confidence in your Doctor’s ability was rated at 95%
Respect shown to patients was rated as 96% AND Satisfaction with treatment by reception staff was 94%
On the negative side, while 93% of patients were happy that the doctor allocated enough time for their concerns; only 75% of patients were happy with the waiting times. Please feel free to ask Staff for approximate waiting times upon your arrival. However, please be aware that only estimates can be given and while the doctor may be on time when you ring, it may not be the case by the time you arrive. Also, in consideration for others waiting- please do not squeeze in family members– one appointment per patient is preferred.
Some patients commented about the TV program being repetitive and dull– we are currently conducting a survey and will be reviewing this. Also access to water was requested- as children are tempted to play with water coolers we are unwilling to provide one, however, staff are more than happy to oblige with a glass of water on request.
We also would like to continue to receive feedback on the After Hours service for quality improvement purposes. Please let your doctor know of your experience when you use the service.
Sadly, Dr Helen Vernon will be retiring at the end of September. Florence St Family Practice wishes her all the very best in her retirement.
We would like to reassure you that your records are safe and transferable to any doctor of your choice.
Online appointments are now available for your convenience!!
To book an appointment, follow the link : http://healthengine.com.au/service/FlorenceStFamilyPractice
You can either choose the first available appointment or choose the doctor you wish to book with.
If you can’t see an appointment or wish an urgent appointment, please call the surgery and our friendly staff will assist you.
Florence St Family Practice warmly welcomes Dr Chitra Das to the practice. She brings with her a wealth of experience having practised in rural Victoria for the last 7 years. A mum of two, she has interests in child and adolescent health, mental health, womens health and skin cancer medicine. She works on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays and is on a roster for Saturdays as well. We are excited to have her join our practice and wish her and her family all the best in their transition to Sydney.