Latest News

Temporary change to fit notes announced by the Government (17.12.21)

For Statutory Sick Pay (SSP), where employees go off sick on or after 10 December 2021, employers can only ask employees for proof of sickness (such as a fit note) after 28 days of sickness (including non-working days). Proof of sickness cannot be requested earlier than 28 days.

Fit notes do not have to be provided for DWP benefit claims until 27 January. This will not affect claims to benefit.

These changes are to give GP’s more time to work on the Coronavirus (Covid-19) booster programme.

Phone lines - closed at lunchtime (12 noon - 1.00 pm)

From Tuesday 14th December to Friday 24th December (inclusive) 

Due to unprecedented patient demand combined with reduced staffing levels, we are closing the phone lines for 1 hour per day to allow staff keep on top of daily tasks, e.g., prescription requests, the scanning on of incoming letters onto patient records, etc., in other words, we are doing this from a patient safety angle. The surgery doors will remain open. This is the first time the practice has undertaken such a move, and we hope you understand. Our thanks for your continued patience and support - the Surgery has amazing patients who have been incredibly supportive towards us throughout the pandemic. 


Business Manager

Local Pharmacies open over Christmas Period

Pharmacies 2021


Over 18 years, 1st, 2nd (8 weeks following 1st vaccine) and boosters (3 months after 2nd vaccine)

The PCN are continuing to offer COVID vaccinations at Fellrose Surgery, Craghead Road, Chester le Street, DH2 2 NH and has increased the number of appointments to help give all eligible patients a vaccination before the end of December. 

We are able to offer WALK IN CLINICS on:

Wednesday 22nd December from 14:00 until 18:30 hrs

Thursday 23rd     December from 10:00 until 11:45 hrs

Please do not walk in if you have an appointment booked at another vaccination site

There are appointments available to book, following invite from your GP practice on the following dates:

Tuesday 21st  December         All day

Wednesday 22nd December     All day

Thursday 23rd December        08.10 – 13.00 hrs

Monday 27th December           All day

Tuesday 28th December          All day

Thursday 30th December        All day

Patient queries about Covid vaccination records

A service is being established to support people in England with specific queries about their COVID-19 vaccination records. This service is expected to go live in August and we will provide more information when available. In the meantime, you can find answers and support for common data queries on the NHS Digital website

Currently there is not a central mechanism for capturing details of overseas COVID-19 vaccines, and only vaccines delivered in the UK can be accepted as evidence for UK COVID certification/ the NHS COVID Pass.

Step Up Sisters - poster

Please note: these sessions are not run by Sacriston Surgery 

Step UP Sisters - Sacriston Youth and Community Project

The school immunisation team have 4 catch up Flu clinics for school children

  • December 22nd  Horden CC                     9.00 am - 3.00 pm
  • December 30th   Abbey Leisure, Pity Me   9.00 am - 3.00 pm
  • January 29th      Louisa Centre, Stanley    9.00 am - 3.00 pm


All are drop in sessions for parents/guardians and their children.  They will also be advertised on Facebook 

Cough and Colds in Children

We are seeing an awful lot of children with coughs and colds - to reassure parents and to offer some guidance and support, please see the following resources: 

YouTube clip on coughs and colds in babies and children

Little Orange Book - Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infection (RSV) Animation - YouTube

If you want access to the full "Little Orange Book", which is a really useful resource, it is a comprehensive guide for parents which covers a wide range of aliments in children from common minor ailments like teething, constipation, and colds, through to more serious conditions, then please contact the surgery and we can email it to you (it is too big to go on the website!)

FLU Vaccinations 2021

We still have some flu vaccine left...but we are getting near the end of our supplies.

If you are under 65 and eligible for a flu vaccine (e.g. have a long term condition) or are over 65 years old, PLEASE contact the surgery to arrange you flu vaccine

Public Health England Flu Information Booklet 2021

2 -3 year old Children and the Flu Vaccine

Please see this poster:  2 - 3 year old children and the Flu Vaccine

PLEASE contact the surgery to arrange your child's nasal flu spray

Prescription Requests via Email

You can now order your repeat prescription via our new generic email address:

Please include your name, date of birth and the medication you wish to request.

Your request will be processed within the normal time frame of 2 working days.

Veterans Health

Please see the attached poster if you are a veteran.

Veterans Mental Health and Wellbeing Service

Pain Killers Don't Exist Campaign

If you have been taking painkillers for longer than three months, they are probably no longer working. And, you run the risk of being unintentionally, physically addicted to the medication.

Please click on the following link for further information:


COVID Vaccination Proof for Travelling Abroad

PLEASE do not contact the surgery for proof of having had two approved vaccines, thus allowing you to travel abroad.

See the following website:

Covid Vaccination Passports

The Practice's Prescription telephone line

With effect from Monday 10th May 2021, the practice's prescription line will be open between

1.00 pm - 3.00 pm

Monday - Friday

First Contact Physio Service

NEW in C le St!

First Phyiso Service: Contact Details

COVID 19 Tests

If you have been referred to your GP by 119 for a COVID test we are sorry but we are unable to help. We do not have the ability to test. Please be patient and continue to try 119. If you wish further advice on COVID - please contact NHS direct on line or phone 111.


There is currently a capacity issue with testing via 119. Your GP practice are not able to provide tests or diagnose COVID. If you have been directed to your GP practice by 119 please hang up, be patient and continue to isolate until you are able to obtain a test.



Face Masks - patients seeking exemption letter

Please read the attached letter

Face masks and exemption letters

See this website for more info:


Patient Transport: How to access it...

Leaflet for Patients about Patient Transport

Poster for Patients about Patient Transport

Better Health

Public Health England has launched a major new adult health campaign to seize the opportunity for a national reset moment of health.

Nearly two thirds (63%) of adults in the UK are overweight or living with obesity.

Gaining weight is often a gradual process that takes place over a number of years and modern life doesn’t always make it easy. But this extra weight causes pressure to build up around vital organs, making it harder for the body to fight against diseases like cancer, heart disease and now COVID-19.

By reducing your weight within a healthy range, you can cut your risk of being critically ill with COVID-19.

To improve health and wellbeing, individuals should aim to have a BMI below 25 and above 18.5.

NICE recommends that Black, Asian and minority ethnic groups (BAME) should aim to have a BMI below 23 and above 18.5 to avoid risks to health.

To support people to live healthier lives, Public Health England’s Better Health campaign will provide a variety of tools and apps to help you make healthier food choices, become more active and prevent future weight gain. One of these tools is a Weight Loss Plan app, which provides 12 weeks’ worth of engaging content that can be personalised and tailored to the goals and needs of the individual. Later down the line, support will also be made available to help people quit smoking, cut down their drinking and look after their mental health.

For help and support to lose weight, visit

Better Health Banner

Want to stop smoking?

Throughout the Coronavirus outbreak our Smoke-free County Durham service is still open. Our person-centred service focuses on delivering flexible specialist stop smoking support to those who live or work in County Durham. Our Practitioners are here to offer you support with quitting smoking so please contact us on 0800 772 0565 or 0191 369 2016.


COVID-19 and smoking

What you need to know

If you smoke, now is the time to quit, to help you stay healthy and out of hospital.

See the coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for smokers and vapers from Public Health England.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory infection, which can cause life threatening complications affecting the heart as well as the lungs.

Smoking damages your heart and lungs, which can put you at greater risk of developing severe disease from COVID-19.

Smokefree County Durham service is still open and accepting self-referrals throughout Coronavirus.

Call 0800 772 0565 or email


Information for patients

If you have symptoms (acute respiratory infections, using any one of the following: cough or fever or shortness of breath)

  • DO NOT come into the surgery
  • DO NOT attend A&E
  • Visit the 111 website



Coronavirus and Fit (Sick) Notes

If you need to provide a note to employers asking for proof that you are self-isolating please go to


Please read the attached:

Coronavirus and Fit Note Advice

electronic Repeat Dispensing (eRD)

If you get regular or repeat prescriptions, you could save time by switching to electronic Repeat Dispensing (eRD).

eRD sends your prescriptions electronically from your GP surgery to a pharmacy of your choice. It’s easy to use and you don't need a computer or electronic device. Ask your GP or pharmacist to set it up for you.

eRD allows your GP to prescribe your regular medicines for up to a year. It’s reliable, secure and confidential. Your regular prescriptions are stored securely on the NHS database, so they'll be ready at the pharmacy each time you need them.

Using eRD you can:

  • save time by avoiding unnecessary trips or calls to your GP every time you need to order a repeat prescription
  • order or cancel your repeat prescriptions online (if your GP practice offers this service)
  • pick up your repeat prescriptions directly from your pharmacy without having to visit your GP
  • spend less time waiting for your prescription in the pharmacy or GP practice
  • save paper – you won’t need a paper prescription to collect your medicine from the pharmacy

For more information about eRD and how it works, ask at your GP surgery or pharmacy, or visit the NHS website:


Information for patients

Regarding non-NHS repeat prescription services

We are aware that repeat prescription services that are not legitimate NHS services are currently being advertised.


Be cautious if an individual offers to pick up your prescription for you at a cost.


Anyone signing up to this service should be aware that it is not endorsed by, or aligned to any NHS organisation. Patients will be signing up to a private contractual agreement between themselves and the individual providing the service.


We would strongly advise any patient thinking of signing up to this service to ensure that they consider whether it complies with Data Protection Act (DPA) and General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) in relation to how their information will be stored and processed.


Any advertisement for a legitimate NHS service offering repeat prescription service will display the NHS logo and the contact details of the organisation(s) providing this. 


If you have any questions or concerns about a service that you have seen advertised in your local area, please speak to the Business Manager (Martin) who will forward on your question or concern.



The Medicines Optimisation Team


August 2019


 Extended Access Service


There is an extended access service, running Monday to Friday evenings, and Saturday and Sunday.

Both GP and Nurse or Health Care Assistant appointments are available.

This is an extension of the GP service that runs as normal throughout the day, and is aimed firstly for those people who, for example, work and find it difficult to get to see a GP or Nurse or Health Care Assistant during the day.

This poster offers more information:

Extended Access Service

Information about our appointments system and prescription


Ring our main appointments number on (0191) 371 0232 using option 2 to book an appointment: the line is open from 8.00 am to 3:00 pm.


Urgent appointments

Is one where you have contact with a GP within 24 hours (we cannot guarantee that you will be matched to the GP of your choice, but we will try to)


Routine appointments

  • With any GP is an appointment within 2 weeks
  • With the GP of your choice is an appointment within 4 weeks


Our Reception staff has been trained to ask questions to help direct you to the most appropriate appointment / GP / Nurse: PLEASE take the view that they are there to help, and are not asking questions for no reason at all.


We offer:

  • Early morning appointments (before 8 am) on a weekly basis: days can vary occasionally so ask at Reception for details.
  • Late evening appointments every Monday (last GP appointment 8:20 pm).

You can book an appointment on-line via our website: please ask a Receptionist for details as to how to do this.

You can help us by:

  • Being on time for your appointment
  • Letting us know if you need to cancel
  • Calling for a home visit or urgent appointment before 10 am
  • Ringing for a repeat prescription between 9.00 am and 3.00 pm
  • Ringing for the results of tests between 10.00 am and 6.00 pm


Repeat prescriptions   

  • Please ask at reception if you would like to start ordering via email or nominating a pharmacy you would prefer to have your prescription forwarded to electronically.
  • You can also post the prescription request in the box in the foyer (please ensure social distancing) or post your request to us.

PLEASE allow 2 working days for the practice to process your prescription request, and 3 working days for the on-site pharmacy to process the prescription order (other local pharmacies may operate on a different time scale).

Therefore, we suggest you plan ahead at least 5 working days for any repeat medication requests.

  • If you take medication on a long-term basis, you can ask for a repeat prescription by ringing the prescriptions telephone line on (0191) 371 0232 you should ring between 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm.

Use of antibiotics

Please see this poster:

Antibiotics usage poster

Wi-Fi available to patients

Please see the attached poster as to how to access Wi-Fi in the waiting room.

WiFi available in the surgery

Eligibility for help with NHS Costs

Patients are required to make a payment towards the cost of certain items, such as prescriptions, dental or eye care.

The NHS has an online checker so you can see what help you could get to pay for NHS costs at:

 Advice for Families: Coughs and Noisy Breathing in Young Babies

What is RSV? Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) is a very common virus and almost all children have been infected with it by the time they're 2 years old.  However, due to lockdown a lot of our under 2 population haven't mixed in the usual way at soft play, nurseries and play groups therefore haven't built up the immune system defences one would usually expect.


The infection is spread by coughs and sneezes so continuing the hand and surface hygiene we've all got used to during the COVID-19 pandemic is essential.


The infection is usually mild in 97% of babies and it is our hope that the attached leaflet will provide families with useful information on how to recognise this in their babies, how to care for their babies at home and what to do if they think they need help.


The Little Orange Book can be downloaded HERE




Health News from the BBC and the NHS

BBC Health
NHS Choices Behind the Headlines
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