Hexham Physio continues to follow the national guidance provided by NHS England, Public Health England and our regulating body, the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy with regards to implementing policies and processes in relation to COVID-19 and maintaining a safe environment for patients and staff.
Screening patients for face-to-face consultations
Patients wishing to book for a face-to-face consultation will be screened initially by telephone against the following screening criteria:
- Do they (or does anyone their household) have symptoms of COVID-19, or had symptoms of covid-19 within the last fourteen days?
- Does their clinical presentation require a face-to-face consultation or could the consultation reasonably by provided remotely by video
- Patients are also screened for specific high-risk criteria. Covid-19 high-risk criteria include age >70, BMI >40, BAME ethnicity, weakened immune system , comorbidities that cause immunosuppression , diabetes , rheumatoid arthritis, pre-existing infections, long term steroid use and patients with known cancer diagnosis and currently having active Rx.
- Whilst Hexham Physio continue to take all reasonable steps to minimise any risks to patients (including observing social distancing measures , infection control and PPE) we acknowledge that physiotherapy may have inherent risks in that it often requires close physical contact (<2m for >15mins) which may increase risks of exposure and transmission of COVID-19. We ask all patients to provide consent that they are aware of this issue.
Does your condition require a face-to-face consultation?
Hexham Physio is will perform a risk assessment in relation to every request for face-to-face consultation. The screening is performed by our clinical director. Clinical judgement will be based upon the information provided and we shall contact patients for further information where necessary. Below are examples of the type of criteria that may be deemed to warrant a face-to-face consultation. This list is not exhaustive.
- Patient’s symptoms are deteriorating despite undertaking remote physiotherapy consultations.
- Patient has failed to improve despite attempts using a range of reasonable approaches that have been performed under remote consultation.
- Patient’s presentation requires a physical assessment in order to screen for signs and symptoms that may significantly change a patient’s treatment of management.
What changes you expect when attending to your appointment?
- Patients attending for face-to-face consultation are also advised of the personal protective equipment (PPE) that will be worn by their treating physiotherapist. This will normally include a face mask, a plastic apron and gloves and, depending on the consultation type, may also require the use of protective goggles or a protective visor. The specific requirements relating to PPE use is made under the guidance of the government’s Infection & Prevention Control Policy and Guidelines.
- Patients are also advised that they will be requested to wear PPE, normally a face mask.
- Patients will be asked to wash and/or sanitize their hands before entering the clinic room
- Patients are also advised that government guidelines around social distancing and covid-19 secure systems and processes are being observed within our clinics and waiting areas and, therefore, additional steps of staggering of clinic times, gaps between patient consultation to allow cleaning of the waiting area and other such steps are being taken in order to minimise the chances of patient-to-patient contact.