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PCC to offer limited face-to-face appointments

Eyleen Gomez

The Primary Care Centre will begin to offer a limited number of face-to-face doctor appointments as from July 20 as Gibraltar eases out of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The GHA said it has set up a new call centre with additional phone lines while also clarifying the procedure of renewing a GHA health card.

At present, GP appointments are available over the phone while face-to-face appointments with the GP are held by invitation only.

These are available from 8.15am to 3pm each day, and from 4.30pm to 7pm for the emergency evening clinic.

“We are constantly reviewing all our systems and are looking to provide the public with the ability to book face to face appointments without having to go through a telephone consultation first,” a statement from the GHA said.

“We will be introducing face to face appointments for GPs with effect from July 20.”

“However, to ensure that we respect social distancing and to minimise cross infection, we will need to limit the number of these appointments.”

“Telephone consultations will also continue to be available for those prefer them.”

The GHA explained that during the Covid-19 pandemic, 20 telephone lines were set up to cater for the expected increase in demand, adding that this was possible due to the deployment of Government staff whose offices were closed through the pandemic.

“As we Unlock the Rock, these staff members have been recalled by their department and we have had no other option but to revert to pre-Covid arrangements of telephone lines,” the GHA said.

“We have increased this by a further two lines but there is a huge demand on the system at the moment as a result of a return to normality for many.”

“Adding to this, there have been some technical issues which have also slowed things down. We are happy to report that the technical telephone issues have been resolved and we are looking to set up further telephone lines within a new call centre.”

The GHA said doctors will always endeavour to call back every patient added onto their clinical session list but there are some circumstances in which, for various reasons, the doctor is unable to get hold of a patient.

On these occasions, doctors are instructed to call on three separate occasions during the course of the clinical session and these attempts are always documented in the patient record.

The statement from the GHA also helped to clarify the various telephone numbers for the different services, including GP appointments: 20007910 or 20052441; enquiries 20072355; for repeat prescriptions 20007909 or prescriptionrepeats@gha.gi; for sick notes: 20007888.

In order for Gibraltar residents to renew their GHA Health Card, there is an online service which can be found on the Government of Gibraltar website under Covid-19 online services, GHA renewal of Card.

This can be found at: https://www.gibraltar.gov.gi/covid19-services

Anyone without an eGov account will need to register first. The option will appear automatically in the same page, via the Register Now box.

After registration with eGOV, the username and password will allow the user to register online for the health card.
If there are any problems with eGOV or with registering, assistance is available via support@egov.gi

Users are advised to save all the documents before the application is submitted.

Those individuals who cannot access the eGOV system are advised to contact the registration team directly via healthcardapplications@gha.gi or, during working hours 9 am to 1pm on 20007833, 20007860 or 20007866.