Clinic Re-Opening

Dec 8, 2021

Hello everybody, I hope you’re all keeping well as we all get through these tough times. It’s been eight weeks now since I closed the clinic but I have decided to gradually re-open the clinic. This is after careful deliberation as well as guidance from the professional bodies for osteopathy. I’ve made this decision because we are, hopefully, now past the peak of the pandemic but also because the NHS is under less strain than before and PPE manufacturers are now catching up with increased demand. It is now more ethical for me to procure PPE without potentially affecting supply to the NHS and frontline doctors and nurses who need it most.

To safely and sensibly re-open I have made some changes, which fall into four categories:

  • Changes to the Clinic
  • Changes to Appointments
  • Changes to Practitioner
  • Changes to Patients

Changes to the Clinic

I have reduced fabric surfaces in the clinic. The couch covers have been replaced so that the impervious leather surface of the couch is exposed around the area where a patient’s face may be. Of course, these areas will be disinfected between every patient. Pillowcases have been replaced with vinyl versions and disposable paper covers will be used as normal to cover the couch where a patient will lie or sit. Hand sanitiser is provided to everybody on entering the clinic and surface contact is being kept to a minimum; so contactless payments are possible up to £40 now .

Changes to Appointments

Appointment duration remains the same as normal but time buffers have been added. This means I am not treating patients back-to-back and there is a minimum of fifteen minutes between every patient. This gives time for patients to come and go with no chance of encountering anybody else other than me in the clinic. I therefore ask that you do not arrive for your appointment early. This time buffer also allows me to properly clean the treatment room after every patient.

Changes to Practitioner

The noticeable change you will see in me is my PPE. As mentioned above, I have now obtained appropriate PPE so that the safety of everyone is optimised. In accordance with Public Health England guidelines (found here and here) I am using single-use aprons and gloves, which are disposed of after each patient. I am also using fluid-resistant (Type IIR) surgical masks, which are changed after every session (for example an afternoon session of seeing patients) or if they become damp or otherwise necessary. As normal, I am washing hands between patients. I have also completed the following online courses from the World Health Organisation so that correct procedures and use of PPE are followed:

Changes to Patients

I’m not changing my patients but I do have a few requests from you! The clinic will gradually re-open and, as such, emergency patients will be seen first followed by patients who are considered to be in a lower-risk group. I am not banning patients in higher-risk groups but I will discuss with each patient the suitability of treatment to help them make a sensible, safe and informed decision for themselves. I may, for example, recommend that an elderly or immune-compromised patient delay coming to the clinic for now and let that help them to decide. The patients that I will be asking to stay away are those who have experienced covid-related symptoms in the past ten days or who have had contact with anyone who has. As mentioned above, please do not arrive for your appointment too early and please use the hand sanitisers provided on arrival. You may also like to bring your own mask with you to your appointment.

On a Lighter Note

On a lighter note, having so much free time over the past two months has given me the chance to make some improvements to the clinic and service from me going forward. The clinic has had a little makeover and so has the website so it now has a lot more helpful information but it is still a work in progress so bare with me! I’m also in the process of producing our very own app so that when I give patients rehabilitation exercise programmes, they can view them as videos on their phone in the app and also directly message me from the app with any queries. Patients can also film themselves in the app doing the exercise for me to check they are being done correctly. Moreover, the app will remind patients to do the exercises…so no more missing homework! The app will hopefully be ready within the next few weeks. Finally, once I’m fully up and running again I will be bringing a new method of treatment to the clinic called shockwave therapy. This is a relatively new technology that can give fantastic results when treating tendon injuries, tennis elbow, plantar fasciitis and more. These are some of the more difficult conditions to treat so having a new method of treating them that has good scientific evidence to show its effectiveness is quite exciting.

In the process of re-opening I will be contacting those of you who had appointments booked in before the lockdown to discuss recommencing your treatment but if anyone has any queries, please get in touch. Stay safe everybody and hopefully I’ll be seeing some of you again in the not-too-distant future.

Keep well!


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