GP surgery plans new standalone consulting room to separate infectious patients

The Little St John's surgery in Woodbridge Picture: GOOGLE MAPS

The Little St John's surgery in Woodbridge Picture: GOOGLE MAPS - Credit: Archant

A GP surgery in Woodbridge is looking to create a separate consulting room to prevent contagious diseases from spreading.

Little St John’s Surgery in Woodbridge has applied for planning permission from East Suffolk Council for a new isolated consulting room to be built.

The new room would be a small extension to the existing surgery and would see the loss of one of the building’s parking spaces.

The isolated consulting room would see patients with potentially contagious illnesses use an exterior door to enter the room directly, without the need to pass through the main waiting room.

This would minimise the interaction they would have with other, potentially vulnerable, patients at the surgery and prevent the spreading of the condition they are presenting with.

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A doctor would access the new room from the inside of the existing building and be able to put on or remove protective equipment as they passed between the two sections.

Dr Rajinder Sidhu, senior partner at the surgery said the application was based on the practice’s experiences in the past few months.

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“We asked ourselves what we could do if there was a second wave or a worse situation in the winter,” said Dr Sidhu.

The idea they came up with was a separate consultation room which could be used should the situation worsen.

“We had to close the surgery during the recent months,” said Dr Sidhu.

“This way we can remain open and we can have it built with everything we need for infection control.

“We want to get this rolling.”

As well as helping to deal with the current pandemic Dr Sidhu said that such an addition would be important to ensure the surgery could deal with any future epidemics, like flu.

NHS Ipswich & East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group’s Head of Primary Care, Claire Pemberton, said: “All our GP practices are responsible for the management and operation of their own estates.

“We are aware that some practices have been considering making changes in order to better support the delivery of services for Covid-19 positive and non Covid-19 patients.”

A final decision on the plans for the surgery will be made by East Suffolk Council in due course.

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