Community based health care adapting to new ways of working to resume face to face appointments for east Surrey patients

Published on 13/08/2020

First Community Health and Care have been working creatively over the past few months to ensure our local patients still receive outstanding health care, despite the challenges of responding to the COVID19 pandemic.  We are delighted to now be in a position where a number of our services are resuming face to face patient contact.


At the beginning of the outbreak our services quickly adapted to telephone and video consultations to provide our patients with the continuity of care and support they needed.  The services are continuing with a ‘virtual first’ approach, and have worked to produce criteria for those patients who then need to be seen face to face.


Like many organisations we are managing social distancing and  COVID secure settings which means significant changes to or estate.  However, our services have worked together to agree the priorities for our sites and are running alternative clinic rotas to accommodate the needs of our patients and importantly to reduce backlogs.


Orthotics service is now running from Oxted Therapies Centre, together with an increasing number of Podiatry clinics as well as some COVID Rehabilitation clinics. We have also resumed assessments and treatment planning for patients with musculoskeletal (bone and joint) problems at our Birchwood site.



The Outpatient Physio team at East Surrey are welcoming an increasing number of patients back now into the main department at the hospital, as well as at Caterham and Oxted. Audiology have resumed face to face clinics at Crawley and Horsham Hospitals.


Su Ryan, Head of Therapies and Long Term Conditions said “We are very excited to be able to see our patients face to face again, in a COVID secure environment.  I am extremely proud of how our patients and staff adapted to virtual consultations during the lock down period.  I am very grateful for the support, patience and understanding we received from our patients and look forward to continuing to provide first rate health care to the people of east Surrey by adapting to new ways of working.  If you have any questions about returning to our clinics or settings please do not hesitate to get in touch”