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Safe appointments at Eleanor Clinic during COVID-19

As you are all aware the best thing we can all do to slow the spread of Covid-19 is to stay at home.

At Eleanor Clinic we have put best current medical advice into practice and changed how our clinic runs during the pandemic. The aim is to be available to look after our patients. We are here for you to get through this difficult time.

Phone consults

You first point of call will now be a phone consult, which will be fully bulk billed. Referrals and scripts can be done this way and sent to you. Your doctor can then decide if further things are needed. A video assessment or a face to face consultation can be organised as per your doctor’s recommendations.

Eleanor Clinic’s friendly team with our reception under a canopy in the car park.

In person consults at Eleanor Clinic

All patients who enter our clinic will first be screened for fever and asked to use hand sanitiser on entering.

Well patients

Well patients coming in for important issues like antenatal care, 6 week baby checks, Diabetes management etc will be given special time slots to come in – isolated from anyone else.

Unwell patients

Unwell patients will be given a specific time to come to the clinic. On arrival please give us a call and let us know you are here. If you are coming via car, please stay in your car. Otherwise we invite you to take a seat in our clinic front garden. There is a chair in each corner for safe physical distancing.

Vaccinations

We continue to offer vaccination clinics – these are vitally important. Vaccinations will be done by our nurses outside the clinic under our marquee or in your car. Of course all vaccinations will be entered and documented into your file. Flu vaccinations are fully funded for:

  • Children between 6 month and 5 years
  • People with chronic health conditions, like asthma, Diabetes, Rheumatoid disease, etc
  • Pregnant women in all stages of pregnancy, pertussis booster after 20 weeks for each pregnancy recommended
  • People aged 65 and older

If you do not belong to any of the above groups we can administer the flu vaccine privately, fee $25/person.

Over the coming weeks we will see a rapid rise of COVID infections in our community. Remember that children are the group that is mostly only mildly affected. But you should keep children away from the grandparents as even well appearing children can spread COVID to people who are elderly or those with chronic health conditions.

#We will stay at work for you – please stay at home for us!

COVID resources

Children
Pregnancy
Senior citizens
Anxiety & Stress
Self isolation / quarantine
General advice

 

COVID 19 update

Last updated: 23 March, 2020

→ Update 28 March: We have moved COVID resources to a dedicated page. You can always access these resources from the site menu under COVID-19

→ Update 23 March: Superheroes in the West and an information sheet for senior citizens.

→ Update 20 March: Resources for parents and children.

Update 15 March: Our pre-clinic triage and controlled patient flow policy is now in place. Telehealth consult update.

Update 12 March: Telehealth appointments are now available.

We take the trust you put into us very seriously. We are working hard to stay on top of the evolving information around the efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19. A lot of this information is in flow and health services and clinics around the country are adjusting to new information and regulations as they become available.

If you are unwell with fever OR cough OR shortness of breath belong to one of the following groups:

  • Recent travel to any country outside Australia

  • You are a close contact of a person with confirmed COVID-19

  • You are a healthcare worker or residential aged care worker

  • You are an aged and residential resident

  • You are Aboriginal or a Torres Strait Islander

We are well prepared to continue looking after our patients – especially during these very challenging times.

Tele-health appointments are here.

We now have available tele-health appointments. This is a consultation with your Eleanor Clinic doctor you know but you actually stay at home and we discuss on the phone or may use a video-call.

The phone consults are fully privately billed, as there is no Medicare rebate for phone consultations with your GP. Please read the details on our booking page.

There are Medicare exemptions for specific patient groups at risk of COVID-19 infection where Medicare will allow bulk billing (no cost to you). This is if one of the following is true for you:

  1. has been diagnosed with COVID-19 virus but who is not a patient of a hospital; or
  2. has been required to isolate themselves in quarantine in accordance with home isolation guidance issued by Australian Health Protection Principal Committee; or
  3. (considered more susceptible to the COVID-19 virus being:
    1. (at least 70 years old, or
    2. at least 50 years old or over if of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent; or
    3. pregnant; or
    4. a parent of a child under 12 months; or
    5. a person under treatment for chronic health conditions or who are immune compromised.

Our booking system will automatically guide you to the appropriate appointment for your circumstances.

Safety first: triage and consults in person at Eleanor Clinic

Should you come to Eleanor Clinic in person we now have pre-clinic screening in place. There is currently only controlled patient flow in the clinic. What does that mean?

We are screening all patients seeing us at Eleanor Clinic on the phone when they arrive outside the clinic. We can have this phone call either with you waiting in your car or taking a seat in our lovely front yard, should you arrive by foot or public transport.

Depending on your current circumstances we will then either see you inside the clinic rooms or we may do a consult in our very large car park – with you remaining in the comfort of your own car.

Yes, this is unusual. But these are truly unusual times and we want to make sure you, your family and all our staff remain protected.

This may all be somewhat unsettling for you to hear but we are putting these measures into place to keep you safe – not to upset you.

Lastly: These are tough times and there is no doubt they are going to get tougher. Keeping a cool head pays off to stay organised and do what needs to be done right now. We are going to get through this and we as a population will then mostly be immune to this virus – at which point we will be able to return to a much more normal life.

Your team at Eleanor Clinic.

Superheroes in the West

Vaccination clinic outdoors under a marquee with balloons and nurses in ‘dress ups’

Firstly, thank you to all our fantastic patients for being so supportive of our efforts to reduce the risk of Covid-19 transmission. Your flowers, good wishes and little signs of support are so appreciated!

We are now mainly doing Telehealth consults and have stopped routine face to face consults. This is a safe way to answer your questions and provide you with referrals and scripts. We have also started to set up video consults, which is particularly helpful for assessing sick kids.

If a face to face consult is necessary, it will be arranged following a phone assessment. The primary reason for this approach is to protect the most vulnerable patients in a pandemic, by slowing down the spread of the virus. We have a very limited stock of face masks and gowns so we need to choose carefully to not run out of them. There is a shortage of masks and we were given 40 masks by the primary care network. So you can do the math.

Social distancing – limiting close interpersonal contact – has been shown to slow down the spread of the virus.

We are very committed to continue providing vaccinations . As there is always a risk that people who are well can still transmit the virus, we will do this in an outdoor vaccination clinic under our blue marquee – with balloons! This way we can maintain at least 1.5m distance between patients and provide you with a safe and efficient way to have your vaccines. This new clinic will run on Tuesday afternoons and Thursday mornings.

Being outdoors has been shown to be a very effective way of lowering the risk of transmission. So meet your friends in the park, and see your doctor or nurse under the blue tent! We always knew we would be trendsetters!

Feel free to get your kids to dress up and prepare them that we are currently having ‘dress up’ at Eleanor Clinic as well – our nurses and doctors will be wearing masks and blue superhero capes (gowns)!

An update: We’re growing, joining a national research project and training medical students.

As our Eleanor Clinic family is growing it was time for a new team photo.

Our focus has not changed: we provide high quality medical care in a friendly and welcoming atmosphere. Eleanor Clinic TeamTo grow while keeping our focus on the best medical care for you requires the right professionals to join our team. So we are once again looking to extend our clinic family. Keep an eye out over the next few month: you may spot the odd new face!

In keeping with striving for clinical excellence we have agreed to take part in the General Practice National Antimicrobial Prescribing Survey. This impressive sounding title translates to something very important to all our patients: finding out if doctors are using antibiotics appropriately and are following the latest treatment guidelines.

Don’t worry: No patient data is shared here – we never share any of your information unless you explicitly ask us to. Much rather, this survey studies how the doctors in our practice use antibiotics to make sure your treatment is in line with national recommendations. Something else to make sure our patients receive the best medical care? A no-brainer for us: we were only too happy to agree to be part of this laudable project!

Very much in keeping with this we are delighted to have been accredited by the University of Melbourne to help train medical students here at Eleanor Clinic. We will have a student spending time with one of our doctors each Thursday. We feel strongly about helping to shape the next generation of doctors. What better way to introduce them to the complex and wonderful world of General Practice than right here at Eleanor Clinic!

We understand if you may not wish to have a student present for any or all of your visits with us – this is perfectly fine. We will always ask for your consent to have a student present during a consultation beforehand and we will be just as pleased if you’d rather see your doctor without a student present.

To sum it up: Eleanor Clinic’s very own kind of gentle clinical excellence is thriving and we are carefully growing our family. We have entered research and training collaborations to ensure highest medical standards while helping to train the GPs of tomorrow. Exciting times for all of us!