Hello to all patients and friends,
THANK YOU ALL FOR BEING SO PATIENT…
The Current Situation
I am now able to offer Acupuncture and Zero Balancing on a face to face basis with appropriate safety measures.
Although Government advice from 4th July proposes changes to social distancing, reducing the safe distance from 2 m to ‘ 1 m plus’, we would like to reassure you that the clinic is committed to maintaining 2m distancing at all times, except during treatment where both practitioner and patient will be appropriately protected.
We would also like to reassure you that current cleaning procedures will be maintained to ensure safety at all times.
Chronic Care Definition
Acupuncturists are now able to see patients who fall into the ‘chronic care category’
This covers anyone with a medically defined syndrome that has lasted for 3 months or more. It also covers anyone with recurring health issues which are ongoing for 3 months or more albeit there may not be a specific medical diagnosis.
There are however guidelines and risk assessments which we are asked to follow and evaluate using our professional discretion:-
- We are asked where-ever possible to use telephone or video consultations if there is any doubt about the level of risk to either patient or practitioner.
- We are advised not to have any face to face treatment for anyone who is ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ as these are the people who have been asked to shield themselves.
- We are advised to assess carefully the risk for both parties for those who are ‘clinically vulnerable’, this category covering people who are over 70, or have a BMI >40, or a weakened immune system due to chronic conditions such as diabetes, or rheumatoid arthritis, or long term steroid treatment or cancer treatment amongst others.
- We are asked to consider face to face treatment if the patient’s condition might worsen enough for them to have to go to hospital.
- We also have the scope to consider the effect of ‘mental stress’ or any physical condition which may have worsened during lockdown such that the patient is unable to do their job or look after their family or partner and thereby be defined as ‘urgent’.
Gaining your Consent
You will be asked to sign a form before treatment commences giving your consent for treatment and recognition that I have taken appropriate measures to minimise risk of infection.
Payment for Treatment
We will only be taking payment by BACS or by cheque to avoid handling money.
A face to face session of 45 mins will cost £50, and a telephone or video consultation of 30 mins will cost £25.
I will not be offering Zero Balancing or Facial Cosmetic Acupuncture sessions for the time being
I will be asking you to enter at the rear of the off street car parking area which has a wooden gate which will be unlocked and which you can push open with your arm.
I will then let you in through the rear door of the treatment room and once seated you will be provided with hand gel to sanitise your hands.
When you leave I will open the clinic door and the side gate for you.
If the weather is bad I will ask you to wait in your car until the treatment room is ready and then I will call you in. if you are on foot or bike I will provide a chair to sit on in the nearby bike shed (sorry that this does not sound too appealing but for now please bear with it)
Hand Gel and Gloves
You will be able to sanitise your hands before leaving the treatment room and I will be following the same sanitation procedure.
I am advised that it is far safer to regularly wash or use hand gel than to use gloves, so I won’t be using gloves in the treatment room for acupuncture purposes.
Masks for You and Me
You and will be required to wear as a minimum a disposable or washable mask at all times in the clinic. Please bring your own mask but if you do not have one I will supply and give to you inside the treatment room.
If I consider the risk of fluid transmission to be high (eg if you are sneezing from hayfever) then I will be wearing a higher level disposable mask (known as PPF2) as well as a plastic visor.
If I consider that you also need this level of protection then I will also give you a higher level mask but I will have to charge £3 for this extra equipment.
I am sorry to say that for the time being the toilet will be out of bounds and I would encourage you therefore to make your own arrangements for toilet stops before/after treatment. This is essential to protect both you and myself and my family from cross contamination.
Soft Furnishings and your Clothing
I have removed all soft furnishings in the treatment room that cannot be wiped down or safely disposed of. This includes the couch sheets and pillow cases and the blanket, and the replacement with reusable wipe down pillows and couch roll only. The rug will also be removed.
If a towel is needed for warmth I will supply and launder.
If you need to remove items of clothing I would ask you to bring your own plastic bag to keep these clothes off the furnishings during treatment.
New Cleaning Routines
I have fully reviewed my cleaning procedures and increased the time between patients to allow for thorough room cleaning after every treatment.
This will involve wiping down the chair and couch and door handles and any surface that may have been inadvertently touched by you, as well as cleaning all my needle and moxa trays as per usual.
Some hoovering will be done if needed although the advice is to restrict any procedures that create an ‘aerosol’ effect.
Wherever possible I will leave a window open in the room to increase air flow.
Please understand that I will not be able to offer the same frequency or amount of treatment times as before as I need to allow time for cleaning, and to prevent patient crossover.
With careful staggering of treatment times I will ensure that there is enough space between patients to enable social distancing to be maintained as one person enters and another leaves.
To help me do this I will ask you to attend appointments by yourself unless it is essential that you have assistance or need to accompany a child.
I would also ask you to try and arrive just before your appointment.