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Deadline for GPs to review self-identified shielded patients extended to next week


IT systems


The deadline for GPs to review patients who have self-identified as being at high clinical risk from coronavirus (Covid-19) has been extended from today to 28 April, NHS England has confirmed.

This comes as GPs have commented that they have not received the lists yet.

Practices were originally asked to review all patients who had self-identified as requiring shielding via the Government website by today, after they had been told the names of these patients ‘on or around 17 April’, in an alert sent to GPs earlier this month.

But today NHS England medical director for primary care confirmed to Pulse that the deadline has been extended to 28 April.

The NHS England alert said: ‘Once you receive the list, please review these individuals, determine their appropriate Covid-19 risk category and flag them as high, medium or low risk as appropriate.

‘For any of these patients you flag as high risk, you will need to send them a copy of the patient letter giving advice on shielding.’

However, Dr Kanani added in a live webinar last week that only a small number of patients would need to be reviewed.

She said: ‘They will be fewer in number because most of those patients you will already have found through your original searches or through the searches your system suppliers constructed. I envisage that at about a 10,000 practice list to be about 20 patients at the very most.’

It comes as Dr Kanani apologised to GPs for NHS England’s handling of the shielded patient list amid criticism over tight deadlines and delays to the checking process.

Meanwhile, GPs in Wales were left fielding calls last week after 13,000  shielding letters were sent to the wrong addresses.