The region’s first GP-led COVID-19 Respiratory Clinic has opened in Penrith.
This Clinic will assess, test and diagnose people with mild to moderate respiratory symptoms including fever, sore throat, cough, tiredness and shortness of breath.
This Clinic is one of 100 being rolled out across the country as part of the Federal Government’s response to help combat and control the COVID-19 pandemic.
Wentworth Healthcare, provider of the Nepean Blue Mountains Primary Health Network, has worked closely with Cornerstone Health to establish the Clinic at Our Medical Home, in Penrith.
“Unlike the hospital-based COVID-19 Clinics, this service will provide care for people experiencing mild to moderate respiratory symptoms, not just COVID-19 testing,” said Lizz Reay, CEO of Wentworth Healthcare.
“The GP-led COVID-19 Respiratory Clinic will be particularly helpful for patients with a respiratory illness who require a physical examination and can’t be managed by telehealth alone. The service will be able to test for other respiratory conditions, give clinical advice on symptom management and provide prescriptions where appropriate.”
The Clinic will assess and test people for COVID-19 when clinically indicated. Test results should take approximately 48 hours and will be provided by phone or SMS, whichever is preferred by the patient.
Patients will be referred back to their usual GP for ongoing treatment and the result of any tests can also be provided to the patient’s GP.
“We hope this new Clinic will reduce pressure on hospital COVID-19 testing services and emergency departments, and will allow other general practices in the area to mimimise the need to see people who are showing coronavirus-like symptoms face-to-face,” said Ms Reay.
Attendance at the Clinic is by appointment only and online bookings are preferred. Patients do not need a referral and the service is free.
Appointments can be made online or by calling 8311 3888 only where the patient does not have online access.
The Clinic is located behind Our Medical Home, at Penrith Homemaker Centre, and is open Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm.
Upon arrival, patients will be met in the car park by a concierge and then directed to the COVID-19 Respiratory Clinic, which is set up in a temporary clinical facility.
“We are currently exploring options to open additional clinics in the region. In the mean-time, it’s vital that anyone in the Penrith area experiencing Coronavirus-like symptoms are assessed and tested as soon as possible to prevent the spread of the disease,” Ms Reay added.
For more information go to www.nbmphn.com.au/GPCOVIDClinics.
Troy Dodds is the Weekender’s Managing Editor and Senior Writer. He has more than 15 years experience as a journalist, working with some of Australia’s leading media organisations.