An update from Bruny Island Medical

This is a pandemic.

We have a Pandemic Plan in place. Our Pandemic Plan is at the Targeted Actions stage.

What we are doing at Bruny Island Medical

We at Bruny Island Medical have implemented a number of changes to the way we deliver care to our community in the face of the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. This may be confronting to some and an inconvenience to others, however we must to all that we can to protect the most vulnerable members of our community.

We would like to reassure the Bruny Island community that we will continue to provide medical services to our patients. The situation is rapidly evolving however, so we have introduced bulk billed telehealth (video OR telephone) consultations for all patients (see below). You may be contacted and offered a telehealth consultation instead of a face to face consultation. This is for your own safety, to reduce your contact with others who may be unwell. We

We currently provide a GP to the island three days per week for face to face consultations. We have liaised with the Tasmanian Health Service to develop a plan if we are unable to deliver services face to face, for example, if our GPs were unwell with coronavirus. This includes:

  • maintaining supply with back up GPs, aiming for 2 out of 3 days per week face to face;
  • conducting remote clinics either by video or phone with patients in their homes. Patients are also welcome use facilities at the health centre (this may be useful if your internet or phone reception is not good);
  • offering telehealth consultations to Bruny Island residents any day of the week with any of our Huon Valley Health Centre GPs – you do not have to wait for Bruny Island Medical to be open to speak to a doctor;
  • having patients physically assessed by the community nursing team at the health centre before consulting remotely with the GP via phone or video from the health centre.

Please be assured that conducting phone or video telehealth consultations is not a new idea for us – we have been doing them since 2011 and have the systems in place to support our patients to maintain their health.

We are screening patients on arrival to the Bruny Island Community Health Centre. You will be asked some screening questions and may have your temperature taken. If you answer “yes” to any of the screening questions or your temperature is over 37.5, you will be asked to wait outside or in your car to speak to a nurse. The purpose of screening is to ensure the safety of our staff and patients within the health centre, and to identify those who are unwell and can be moved to an isolation area.

Department of Health

We have adjusted our waiting room. This includes creating a social distance between chairs, and between you and our receptionists. There are hand sanitising stations around the waiting room. Doctors will also be using social distancing in their consultation rooms.

We are cancelling all non essential services. This includes some skin procedures, skin checks and cervical screening. If you are contacted and would still like to proceed with your appointment, please ask to speak to a nurse about how we can offer the service to you in a safe manner.

We are offering telehealth consultations via video or phone (if video not available). You can book telehealth consultations any day of the week with any of our GPs from Bruny Island, Huonville or in Cygnet. Just speak to the reception team at the Bruny Island Community Health Centre, or phone 6264 2800 to speak to the reception team at Huon Valley Health Centre. Teams at both sites can see all appointment schedules, so we will be able to get you help when it suits you.

All telehealth consultations are bulk billed.

We are here to help. It is a challenging time for everyone, but our commitment to the communities we serve to provide best practice evidence based care has not changed.

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