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COVID vaccination now available

COVID vaccination (Astrazeneca vaccine) is now available.

COVID vaccination is a key step in addressing this worldwide pandemic. Vaccination will be rolled out in stages, with priority given to people who are at higher risk of contracting COVID, or suffering more severe illness from COVID infection.

As of 30th April 2021, the rollout is covering Phases 1a and 1b, which means COVID vaccination is available to the following eligible patient groups:

• Hotel quarantine and border workers
• Aged care and disability care staff
• Aged care and disability residents
• Healthcare workers currently employed
• Household contacts of quarantine and border workers
• Critical and high risk workers who are currently employed (eg. defence, police, fire, emergency services and meat processing sectors)
• Elderly people aged 70 and over
• Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 55 years and over
• Adults with an underlying medical condition or significant disability

Please contact our friendly reception staff or book online to arrange your vaccination.

** Please note that it is currently recommended that people aged less than 50 years old are offered Pfizer (rather than Astrazeneca) COVID vaccination however we do not have Pfizer COVID vaccination available at the clinic.

2021 flu vaccine now available

The 2021 flu vaccine is now available.

The flu vaccine is recommended for everyone from six months of age, but is available free under the National Immunisation Program for people who face a high risk from influenza and its complications. These higher risk groups include:

• People aged 65 years and over.
• Pregnant women (at any stage of pregnancy).
• All children aged six months to less than five years of age.
• People aged six months and over with medical conditions such as severe asthma, lung or heart disease, low immunity or diabetes.
• Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged six months and over.

Please contact our friendly reception staff or book online to arrange your vaccination and ensure you are protected this year.

** Please be aware that it is recommended that flu vaccine is not administered within 2 weeks’ of a COVID vaccination.

Updated appointment booking process due to coronavirus pandemic

Due to the current coronavirus pandemic, patients may choose either a Standard face-to-face consultation, or a Telehealth/phone consultation.  Please note that all patients will be asked some important coronavirus screening questions at the time of booking any face-to-face appointments.  Please also be assured that we have multiple protocols in place to minimise the risk of coronavirus exposure at the clinic.  These include increased spacing in the waiting room, outdoor seating, processes that allow waiting in your car until your appointment, hand sanitiser, careful patient triage protocols, and contactless payment options.

Please call the clinic on (03) 9859 8756 to make an appointment, or if you have any queries regarding this process. Appointments can also be made via our online booking service.

Thank you for your understanding in this matter.

Important information regarding novel coronavirus outbreak

As of 24th January 2020, four cases of the deadly coronavirus have been confirmed in Australia: three in New South Wales and one in Victoria.

Less than a month after China first informed the World Health Organization (WHO) of a number of pneumonia-like cases in Wuhan, novel coronavirus 2019 (2019-nCoV) has spread to 11 countries, infected close to 2000 people and led to 56 deaths.

More than 56 million people are currently in lockdown in mainland China, while Hong Kong has also declared a state of emergency. Estimates of the mortality rate sit at around 4% – higher than Spanish Flu but lower than SARS – while 25% of the confirmed cases are reported to be severe.

What is novel coronavirus?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. They cause illnesses that can range from the common cold to more severe diseases. Severe diseases have included:
•Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)
•Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS)

Novel coronavirus (also called 2019-nCoV) is a new strain of coronavirus affecting humans.

Health authorities have identified new coronavirus cases in China in early January 2020. We are learning much more about it.

However, we still don’t know enough about:
•how it transmits
•clinical features of disease
•how it spreads
•the source of infection

Health authorities have identified new coronavirus cases in China, South Korea, Thailand Japan, Taiwan, the United States, and Australia.

Symptoms of novel coronavirus

The virus can cause a range of symptoms. Symptoms can range from mild illness to pneumonia. Affected people may experience:
•fever
•flu like symptoms such as coughing, sore throat and headaches
•difficulty breathing

How you can help prevent novel coronavirus

Everyone should practise hygiene and other measures to protect against infections.

These measures include:
•washing your hands
•covering your mouth while coughing or sneezing
•avoiding contact with wild or farm animals

Diagnosis

A person is classified as a suspected case if they meet certain criteria. These are:

Clinical criteria:

Fever or history of fever AND acute respiratory infection (shortness of breath or cough or sore throat)

OR

severe acute respiratory infection without fever requiring hospitalisation

AND

Epidemiological criteria:

A history of being in a location designated by the department as a place where there is evidence of human to human transmission in the 14 days prior to symptom onset

OR

Close contact within 14 days of symptom onset with any of the following:
•a confirmed or suspected case of 2019-nCoV;
•a healthcare facility in a country where hospital-associated infections have been reported.

After being assessed by a health professional, a suspected case will be tested for the virus. They might also order a chest x-ray.

What to do if you become unwell

If you become unwell and suspect you may have symptoms of coronavirus, you must seek medical attention.

Please ring ahead of time to book your appointment and inform the receptionist that the appointment may be regarding coronavirus illness. This will help make your doctor aware of your symptoms and your travel history and ensure additional precautions are undertaken to limit exposure to others.

Call 000 if you need urgent medical help.

How is novel coronavirus treated?

Specialist infectious diseases teams will isolate people with symptoms of coronavirus. They will provide supportive medical care to treat any symptoms.

I’m travelling to China, what is the risk of catching novel coronavirus?

International travellers to China should check the latest Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) travel advice on the Smartraveller website.

Most people with confirmed novel coronavirus worked at or visited a seafood and live animal market in Wuhan. Authorities closed this market from 1 January 2020.

Chinese health authorities have now implemented monitoring, control and prevention measures including contact tracing and isolation of cases. Authorities are also closing and sterilising other wet markets in the area.

If you are travelling:
•avoid contact with sick people
•regularly wash your hands
•avoid touching your face and mouth after touching surfaces

These practices are especially important if you have contacted animals.

As a precaution, you should avoid visiting wet markets in general, but particularly in Wuhan.

Health authorities both in Australia and globally are closely monitoring the virus as the situation develops.

For further information for travellers returning from China, please click here.

Kew General Practice welcomes Madeleine Price to the team!

Madeleine graduated from Monash University in 1989. She has worked in Hawthorn for the past 22 years and has had the great privilege of caring for three generations of some families and even four generations of one family! Madeleine has also worked as a GP in Hong Kong and in Indigenous communities in Central Australia. She enjoys all aspects of General Practice with special interests in children, adolescents, sports medicine and complex medical problems in the elderly. Madeleine has three adult children and enjoys swimming, gardening and helping out in the community.

Kew General Practice maintains AGPAL accreditation

Kew General Practice is AGPAL accredited – what does this mean?

Being accredited means that our general practice is committed to a comprehensive program which involves:

  • Engaging our whole practice team to review our practice’s systems and processes
  • Opening our practice doors to allow a team of independent surveyors to assess how our practice operates
  • Assessment of our practice, and achievement of the nationally recognised Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) Standards for general practices, that focus on health care quality and patient safety.

As a member of the community you may be surprised to learn that general practice accreditation is a voluntary process – which means not all practices undergo an independent on-site assessment on a regular basis.

Achievement of AGPAL accreditation reassures you that our doctors and practice team are committed to providing you with high quality health care in a safe environment.

Next time you visit our practice be sure to look out for the AGPAL Accredited General Practice Symbol (below) or our accreditation certificate. Our practice team is proud of this achievement and as part of this process we continuously strive to make quality improvements to better your patient experience.