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Patient Notice

Following relaxation of rules around mask wearing, Middle Chare and Woodlands Surgery will still be making it mandatory for all staff & patients to continue to wear face masks before entering & during the time spent in the premises until further notice.

We take the safety of our patients & staff very seriously, whilst trying to mitigate the risk of the Covid19 infection spreading following NHSE guidance within a health care setting and being able to continue to offer a service to our patients amid the rising positive cases .

If you are unable to wear a mask we will offer you a visor.

Thank you for your continued support & cooperation


COVID Booster Update 14.12.2021




PATIENT INFORMATION - 21st October 2021

Dear Patient


Along with the rest of Primary Care Services together with the wider NHS and Social Care we are under quite enormous pressures with huge demand from patients, staff sickness and the ever changing directions from the Government.

At the start of the pandemic we were forced to radically change the way we worked to protect patients and staff and move to a total triage model where all request for our services were initially dealt with over the telephone. Through these changes we were able to minimise attendances at the surgery and try and ensure patients were dealt with in the most efficient and effective manner. This was hugely challenging but using this model of care we were able to continue to function in a safe manner.

We do recognise that the move to total triage has highlighted the inadequacies in our phone systems which at times have been unable to cope as we do not have a call centre system. We are working hard to try and resolve this issue but are faced with contractual barriers that mean we are unable to fix it immediately. We do have a Facebook page that you send us messages through if you absolutely can't get through on the telephones, however this will only be manned during surgery hours.

The Government now want everything to go back to normal although clearly things are not normal. We are seeing high rates of covid amongst younger people especially and this is feeding into general population and affecting parents, those working in schools and health care staff. We too are suffering staff absences which is highly disruptive but have decided there is little option but to abandon the total triage model to satisfy the Government's non-evidence based "face to face" targets. This will mean an overall reduction in appointments, longer waiting times, busier waiting rooms and more chance that patients with COVID may be sat in the waiting room. So if patients feel their problems can be adequately dealt with over the telephone then we would encourage patients to choose that option. If after a telephone consultation it is felt that a face to face assessment is needed then this will be arranged.

The Government "Rescue Package" for Primary Care asks that we work even harder and try and attract extra staff on a temporary basis from a very limited pool of locum clinicians.  We will continue to do our best to try and improve access for our patients and are already offering more appointments on a weekly basis than before the pandemic. It is however likely to be very difficult to find significant extra locums and we anticipate winter pressures will make the next few month extremely challenging. Thankfully after many frustrating months of trying to recruit we have been able to attract a new GP partner – Dr. Perera who will be starting in January. This should improve our ability to offer continuity of care to those with more complex health needs.

We hope this explains some of the challenges we are trying to deal with and the problems you may be facing trying to get the help you feel you need. Rest assured that we will do our best to provide a safe and effective service but we may not be able to meet all of your expectations. We ask for your support and understanding and hope that things will indeed be able to return to some kind of normal after the winter.


Thankyou for your support.


This is an ongoing process. All booster vaccines (for qualifying cohorts) must be administered 182 days after the 2nd Vaccine. 

Covid-19 Guide for adults

Covid-19 What to expect

We are working with other local practices to provide a single site to offer this vaccine from and this is likely to be Pelton & Fellrose site in Pelton (2 Craghead Rd, Pelton Fell, Chester-le-Street DH2 2NH) as it has ample parking, a separate entrance and exit and enough rooms to just be able to only do covid vaccines safely.



Rescue packs are not being sent out to all patients it would only be needed if you have COPD and are experiencing an exacerbation of symptoms and these are requested in the usual manner. Please refer to the NHS and websites for further advise this is updated frequently.



GP Surgeries are not able to provide sick notes/ letters regarding self isolation for COVID-19.

Use to obtain a note.

Current NHS guildlines state that if you believe you have been in contact with anyone who has symptoms of the Covid-19 virus you should self isolate please visit NHS 111 online for more information.

With regards to working from home in the future this is something you need to discuss and arrange with your line manager GPs are unable to advise on this matter at the present time.

Care Navigation

We operate  Care Navigation which is an initiative to help people to find the most appropriate source of help when they call our practice or pop in to make an appointment.

Our specially trained Receptionists/Care Navigators will ask questions about why appointments are required.  You are not obliged to answer the questions they ask, however by doing so we can make sure that those people who really need to see a GP can see them as soon as possible.

Most people who calls to make an appointment asks to see a GP, but very often help will be available more quickly from other highly skilled medical professionals such as nurses or pharmacists, or from other services, including the voluntary sector, who can support people with a wide range of social, emotional or practical needs.

If you would like any further information about Care Navigation, please speak with one of our Care Navigators or our Practice Office Manager.

Keeping You Informed

You can find out information about medical conditions and diseases through our patient information leaflets as well as keep up to date with all the latest practice news and developments.

You can also visit us on FaceBook

You can send us a message through Facebook Messenger, however this will only be responded to within surgery hours. 

Repeat medication

Like many other surgeries, we stopped doing requests by phone some years ago for safety reasons as many medicines sound the same and have difficult names to pronounce which can lead to mistakes being made. There are several ways to order medication, either online, post, via several local pharmacies or by dropping the request slip into the box in the surgery reception. Currently due to Coronovirus we are allowing patients to ring us to order prescriptions.


Our building has suitable access for disabled patients. All the patient areas including the waiting room and the consulting rooms have wheelchair access.

Out of Hours Emergency Care

If you need to out of hours emergency care then NHS Choices offers a search facility for A&E and Urgent Care Centres, so please click here for details.

Online Consulting

Welcome to our new online consulting tools and you can contact us about a medical, administrative  or prescription issue by clicking either of the logos

 Answer a few short questions and we will get back to you within 2 working days.

Please do not use this online form for urgent or emergency requests. The submitted forms will only be read during office hours.  The forms will not be read on the weekends (Saturdays and Sundays) or on bank holidays. 
They will not be read Monday-Friday between the hours of 1800 - 0800.
Please contact 111 during out of hours or 999 if this is an emergency.



Comsult online



Online Prescriptions

Important: We are changing the system for ordering repeat prescriptions. Learn More...


Middle Chare Medical Group have also achieved their Investing in Children Award

Investing In Children    

(Site updated 28/12/2021)
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