GP Communique – August 2021

by Dr Roger Halliwell

Chair of Gold Coast Primary Health Network

Navigating the COVID-19 processes have ramped up again with the Delta variant currently causing trouble around the world and in parts of Australia. Not only is it more easily transmitted between individuals, it is causing earlier symptoms and a significant mortality across the age range.

Locally we continue to work with our Gold Coast Health counterparts to provide testing and clinical assessment options outside the usual go to general practice setting. Risk mitigation strategies may need to be reviewed as patients with respiratory / gastro / fever symptoms are seeking medical attention.

Despite continued messaging around face mask use, hand hygiene, isolation if unwell and the importance of testing we are still seeing members of our community enter primary care seeking medical attention for their respiratory illnesses. In this light it is perhaps timely to re-visit Business Continuity Planning to cover the scenario of a practice or retail pharmacy being closed due to exposure. This may include consideration of relocating COVID-19 vaccine services.

Finally, I would like to acknowledge the ongoing work of everyone through this challenging time. It seems a long time ago that it all started and by any measure we still have a long way to go. Thank you all for your contribution.

Kind regards,
Dr Roger Halliwell