Staff Updates

 

BACK TO MAIN INDEX

 

We are delighted to welcome Mr Grant Griffiths as Practice Manager of Lee Road Surgery. Grant has worked in the NHS for the last 11 years with a wealth of experience in practice management, primary care networks, digital solutions and information technology. Grant has jelled excellently with both clinical and administrative teams in his first month at Lee Road and we look forward to utilising his experience and expertise in establishing new efficient solutions for a smooth-running practice providing excellent patient care.

Many of you will already know Julia Brett and Amina Gredley from reception. As hard-working, astute, natural leaders, they have stepped-up into the roles of Reception Manager and Deputy Reception Manager, respectively. They have both proved to be fantastic assets in these roles and are working with every team member to nurture and encourage their strengths.

It is with great pleasure we announce that Faye Blamire from our reception team is pregnant with her second child! Congratulations to Faye and her family!

We welcome Dr Alexia Rossi to the practice. Alexia is in her final year of GP training and brings with her experience from her work in South Africa. Alexia has fit in fantastically well with the team and we are very lucky to have her on board.

Dr Harriet Kurylec will be returning to the practice in July 2022 as a salaried GP having previously trained with us a few years ago. Harriet has since been working in Rushey Green and looks forward to returning to Lee Road.

Travel Vaccinations

As the heavy veil of COVID-19 restrictions begins to lift, many of us are excited to enjoy the pleasures of life to the full and travel again. As an additional service to our current practice nurse Travel Advice Consultations, we will soon be offering a full Travel Vaccination service. New vaccinations on offer at the surgery include hepatitis B, Rabies, Meningitis ACWY, Japanese Encephalitis and Yellow Fever. Please contact reception for more details and to book an appointment.

Patient Online-Access

The easiest way to order repeat prescriptions and book appointments is via our online access portal. If you are yet to sign-up then please pop into reception with a piece of ID (e.g. passport or driving license) and proof of address (Dated in the last 3 months). We will ask you complete a short form and then can give you your log-in details. Alternatively, you can use the NHS app to confirm your identity.

E-Consultations

As you may be aware we launched our e-consult service back in the Summer 2021 and have received positive patient feedback around its ease of use and prompt replies. The e-consult tool is another way of accessing us as a Practice, particularly useful for those who prefer not to spend time on the phone. The e-consult tool allows you to consult with a clinician, send photographs, gain administrative help and to be sign-posted to useful self-care resources. The e-consult tool is accessible via the practice website, www.leeroadsurgery.co.uk.

Skin Cancer Awareness

May is Skin Cancer Awareness Month. Whilst we have been lucky enough to enjoy some sunny days as we welcome in the Summer, it is vital that we remember the darker side of the sun! It is well recognised that excessive ultraviolet radiation exposure from the sun can lead to skin problems, including premature aging, actinic keratosis (pre-cancerous cells) and skin cancers. In order to provide the best protection, ensure you use 5* UVA rated sun protection with a SPF of 30 or higher. It is best to avoid the midday sun and remember to wear a hat. Non-melanoma skin cancers frequently affect the ears, so don’t forget to cream there! It is important that we keep well-hydrated and do not let our skin turn red or burn. Remember that sun protection wears off with water, towels, sand and sweat so regular creaming is important. If you notice any new skin lesions let us know! We can arrange a face-to-face appointment or even a remote telephone call with photographs to suit those with busy lifestyles.

The ABCDE method of suspecting melanoma skin cancer is a helpful memory aid:

A = Asymmetry

Most melanomas are irregular and asymmetrical. Draw an imaginary cross through the mole. Does it look the same in all 4 quadrants?

B = Border

Melanomas are more likely to have a blurred or “smudged” border with an irregular outline.

C = Colour

Melanomas are commonly made up of multiple colours, such as different shades of brown, black, red and pink.

D = Diameter

Melanomas are typically over 6mm wide. A crude test of a mole is to check if it is bigger than the blunt end of a pencil.

E = Evolving

Any changes in a mole are worth reporting. Changes may be increased pigmentation (becoming darker), itchiness, bleeding or change in size.

If you have any concerns, let us know!

Appointment Type

One positive eventuality of the covid-19 restrictions was the advent of remote consulting, which has proved popular with some patients allowing consultation on medical issues without having to take time out of busy work, family and home schedules. All of our staff have continually worked on-site from the practice throughout the whole of the pandemic, adhering to health and safety restrictions. We are now proud to offer telephone, video and face-to-face consultations to suit all patient preferences. All of our normal face-to-face reviews are back to normal including postnatal check-ups, diabetes reviews, COPD, asthma and mental health annual appointments. We also offer enhanced contraception services including coil and implant fitting, a minor surgery clinic and joint corticosteroid injections.

Missed appointments

Despite the current demands on the practice and the NHS as a whole, we are unfortunately still seeing a significant number of missed appointments with patients not attending scheduled consultations. If you no longer need, or cannot attend an appointment, please let us know so someone else can make use of the time. If we have your up-to-date mobile number on file you should receive a text 24 hours in advance whereby you can cancel with a reply. Please don’t let the appointment go to waste.

Covid-19 Boosters

The JCVI recommends that those over 75 years of age and patients classified as clinically extremely vulnerable are given a covid-19 vaccination booster at least 6 months since their last dose. Vaccinations are being offered from the Waldron Clinic, Amersham Vale, New Cross on Thursdays 9-1pm and Saturdays 9-2pm as a walk-in service. We have given our care home residents their boosters to ensure our most vulnerable patients are protected. Our housebound patients are also receiving their boosters with a plan to complete in the next few weeks.

Five Star Lifestyle

It is well accepted that both our diet and exercise-levels impact our cardiovascular and diabetic risk. However, other lifestyle factors are vital in our ability to control and maintain healthy lifestyle choices, including sleep quality and stress levels. The Five Star Lifestyle, illustrated by Anne Goodchild (2020) depicts the 5 co-existing factors which we must address in order to maintain our cardiometabolic health.

1. Stress Management

In our ever hectic, busy lifestyles, stress can play a significant role. Stress hormones have been shown to alter insulin-signalling and satiety pathways leading to altered eating patterns. Stress interferes with cognitive processes including executive function and self-regulation. It can affect behaviour resulting in decreased physical activity, over-eating, unhealthy food choices and lack of sleep. We can all probably appreciate the temptation of “stress eating!”

2. Social Connection

Ramkisson et al (2017) showed the correlation between good social connections with adherence to treatment and lifestyle recommendations in type 2 diabetes and obesity. The authors found that educating family members about healthy lifestyle was beneficial in helping patients to cope with disease burden and reduced diabetes distress. Our family and social connections being made aware of dietary changes allows for positive reinforcement and easier maintenance of healthy choices.

3. Sleep Quality

There is a significant body of work looking at the association between poor sleep and insulin resistance, linking poor quality sleep with a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes and poor glycaemic (sugar) control in those with established diabetes (Reutrakul S et al, 2018).

4. Movement and Activity

Physical exercise has a wealth of benefits including improved insulin sensitivity (reduced risk of type 2 diabetes), weight reduction, improved blood pressure, favourable lipid profile (cholesterol levels), cardiovascular (CV) fitness, muscle-strength, enhanced mood and well-being and reduced mortality (Lin et al, 2015). The National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) recommends a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate exercise each week.

5. Nutrition

The beauty of nutrition as a lifestyle intervention is there is such a rich tapestry of options available. As always, there is no “one size fits all” solution. It is important that any dietary plan is individualised, led by you our patient’s preferences and goals. Some evidence-based options include:

    1. The Mediterranean diet: Kastorini et al (2011) showed beneficial effects of a Mediterranean diet on lipids/cholesterol, blood pressure and waist circumference.  
    2. The Atkins diet: This low carbohydrate (<30g/day), high fat diet produces quick weight loss results, however, some critics worry about the impact on lipids/cholesterol. Mehta et al (2016) showed that after 12 months of following the Atkins’ diet, patients had improved lipid profiles, with lower triglycerides and higher HDL (“good cholesterol”) levels
    3. The ketogenic diet (low carb, high fat) is effective in both weight loss and glycaemic (sugar) control when compared to a standard low-calorie diet (Goday et al, 2016).
    4. The 5:2 diet comprises of fasting (<500 calories/day) for 2 days and normal eating for 5 days.  A reduction in insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1) on the fasting days, results in a reduction in the risk of both diabetes and dementia (Knott, 2018).
    5. Intermittent fasting: A diet whereby one eats over a short period of the day, (e.g. eating over an 8 hour period and fasting for 16 hours). Intermittent fasting is hypothesized to influence metabolic regulation, which improves health outcomes via effects on circadian biology and the gut microbiome (Patterson et al, 2017).
    6. Low glycaemic index (GI): A low GI diet result in a slower release of glucose and a more stable glycaemic pattern and has been shown in some studies to result in weight loss (Zafar et al, 2019).

If you would like to discuss how you could optimise your health through lifestyle changes then please make a health-check appointment with one of our practice nurses or GPs. After all prevention is better than cure!

References

Goday A et al (2016) ‘Short-Term safety, tolerability and efficacy of a very low-calorie-ketogenic diet interventional weight loss program versus hypocaloric diet in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.’ Nutr. Diabetes 6, e230.

Goodchild A (2020) ‘The Five Star Lifestyle’ Available at https://pitstopdiabetes.co.uk/resources/resource/understanding-a-five-star-lifestyle/ (Accessed 22nd May 2022).

Kastorini C et al (2011) ‘The effect of Mediterranean diet on metabolic syndrome and its components: a meta-analysis of 50 studies and 534906 individuals.’ J Am Coll Cardiol 57(11): 1299-1313.

Knott L (2018) ‘5:2 Diet’ Available at https://patient.info/healthy-living/weight-loss-weight-reduction/52-diet (Accessed 22nd May 2022).

Lin X et al (2015) ‘Effects of exercise training on cardiorespiratory fitness and biomarkers of cardiometabolic health.’ J Am Heart Assoc 4:4.

Mehta A et al (2016) ‘Benefits of commercial weight-loss programs on blood pressure and lipids: a systematic review.; Prev Med. 90:86-99.

Patterson RE, Sears DD. Metabolic Effects of Intermittent Fasting. Annu Rev Nutr. 2017 Aug 21;37:371-393.

Ramkisson S et al (2017) ‘Social support and coping in adults with type 2 diabetes.’ Afr J Prim Health Care Fam Med. 9(1):e1-e8.

Reutrakul S et al (2018)’Sleep influences on obesity, insulin resistance, and risk of type 2 diabetes.’ Metabolism 84:56-66.

Zafar M et al (2019) ‘Low-glycaemic index diets as an intervention for diabetes: a systematic review and meta-analysis.’ Am J Clin Nutr. 110(4):891-902.

The Menopause and HRT

It would seem remiss not to mention the highly publicised issue of the menopause! Women over 45 will experience a natural reduction in oestrogen which can result in some of the common perimenopausal symptoms which include increased fatigue, joint pains, increased anxiety, palpitations, poor sleep, low libido, irritability, vaginal dryness, increased urinary tract infections, poor thermoregulation (hot flushes), night sweats and headaches. The perimenopause and menopause are natural transitions in life and do not need treatment, however if the symptoms become disruptive to quality of life, work and relationships then there are treatment options available, including natural remedies, serotonin-reuptake inhibitors, neuropathic agents and hormone replacement therapy (HRT). If you are struggling with these symptoms, please make an appointment so we can discuss therapeutic options, which could be life-changing!

Clinical Staff Working Days

Our clinical staff work different days of the week. If you have a preferred clinician who you would like to book with, their updated working schedules are shown below:

Dr Paul Adams Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday
Dr Helen Butler Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
Dr Billy Phan Monday, Wednesday, Thursday
Dr Daniel Rivilla Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
Dr Ben Vere Monday, Thursday, Friday
Dr Alexia Rossi (Registrar) Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday
Nurse Lesley Grant Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
Nurse Safina Powell Monday, Tuesday (AM)
Nurse Jerusha McCloy Wednesday, Thursday, Friday