GP Bulletin - February 2015

  Whittington Health GP bulletin   Feb 2015
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This bulletin is emailed each month to GP practices in Islington and Haringey. It contains useful information and updates from our GP medical director about Whittington Health. If you have a news item, event or update you would like to share with other GPs through this bulletin, please email
In this edition
img A note from Dr Greg Battle
img Spotlight on… community gynaecology service 
img Semen analysis 
Bowel screening
Maternity grow charts
New parent and child mental health service
A note from Dr Greg Battle
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Welcome to the February edition of Whittington Health's GP Bulletin. 

We have a new community gynaecology service starting on 1 April 2015. It will offer hospital treatment from community health centres making it more convenient for our patients. More information, including the locations can be found below. 

I have had conversations with some of you about our website, we recognise it needs some work. We would like GPs to help us improve the website by giving us their feedback and telling us what they want out of it. If you can spare a few minutes, please complete a short online survey.  If you have any other queries or questions on the website please contact me directly. 

Unfortunately we are experiencing some technical problems with our dedicated paediatric GP telephone number (07796 940840). GPs use the service to discuss patients and ask us for advice. We are working to get this fixed as soon as possible. If you are unable to get through on the number you can email the paediatric team. For urgent concerns, please bleep the on call pediatrician as normal.  

Lastly, our endoscopy unit has achieved the Joint Advisory Group (JAG) accreditation that ensures quality and safety in patient care in our unit. Full story on our website.   

Best wishes,

Dr Greg Battle      07808 174 569


img Spotlight on… new community gynaecology service   1
img Whittington Health gynaecology service will begin running a new community based gynaecology service from 1 April 2015. The service is an alternative to hospital and benefits patients, by providing the expertise of the hospital’s specialist staff in a community setting which is more convenient.

The service offers a range of gynaecology assessment, investigation and treatment for adult females aged over the age of 16, who are registered with GP practices in Haringey or Islington. 

To refer: referrals are through Choose and Book only (available from 16 March 2015). Further information including named consultants, emergency advice and referral criteria can also be found on Choose and Book.

The clinics will run from the following health centres:  
  • Tynemouth Road Health Centre, Tynemouth Road, N15 4RH
  • Hornsey Central Health Centre, 151 Park Road, N8 8JD
  • Holloway Health Centre, 11 Hornsey Street, N7 8GG
  • Bingfield Health Centre, Bingfield Street, N1 0AL
For more information contact: 
Robert Sherwin, consultant gynaecologist, or 
07825 782 354 or Francis Conway, team leader, or 0207 288 5407  
2   Semen analysis

We are proposing to move to an appointment based system for the collection of semen samples for infertility testing.
This would improve the quality of the results as samples would be reviewed at the optimal time. Staff would be allocated to collection and analysis at these times. Patients would need to call and make an appointment to attend the hospital with their sample. The sample should then be taken directly to the microbiology laboratory at The Whittington Hospital at this time. 
To refer GPs would continue to supply the patient with a request form and container, along with information and instructions.

If you have any feedback on this proposal please contact us on: 020 7288 5086

img Bowel screening   3
The NHS bowel scope screening programme is piloting a new screening test in six pilot areas. Men and women will be invited for 'bowel scope screening' around the time of their 55th birthday. This is being run alongside the national screening programme for people over 60.

Whittington Health is part of this pilot and will be rolling out this screening programme across Haringey and some areas of Islington (the remainder of Islington will be managed by UCLH).

Patients will receive a letter inviting them to a 'flexible sigmoidoscopy'.  
We will be inviting people by GP practice to come in for their test. We will notify each practice before these letters go out. For more information on the pilot programme see the NHS Bowel Cancer Screening Programme website
4   Maternity grow charts
Whittington Health maternity services will use the Perinatal Institute's customised fundal height growth chart for all pregnant women from the beginning of April.

Using these charts will better identify babies at risk of fetal growth restriction and stillbirth among low risk women. Research has shown that using these charts reduces the number of stillbirths by 500 per year in the UK.

We will generate a chart for each woman which takes into account her height, weight, ethnicity and parity. It also considers the birth weight of any previous birth or stillbirth.

We will provide regular updates on the implementation.
For more information visit or contact midwife Sarah Jevons
img New mental health service - Growing Together    5
Growing Together is a service that provides therapeutic support for parents experiencing psychological distress and their children (one - five years). The service is commissioned by Islington CCG and available to families living in Islington or those with an Islington GP.
The service provides a range of interventions which are tailored to each individual family. Our team is made up of psychologists, psychotherapists and family therapists. We welcome parents either on their own or together. We can provide individual or couple sessions for parents. We also run groups for parents on a range of topics. We offer joint sessions with parents and their child, to improve their relationship and the child’s behaviour.
To discuss a patient or family with us please contact us:
Telephone: 020 3316 1824                     
Parents who require secondary care mental health services will not be seen by Growing Together. If only the parent OR the child is experiencing difficulties, then a referral to iCOPE or CAMHS may be more appropriate.

The team also offer training for GPs and other healthcare professionals in adult and child mental health.
For Haringey patients, GPs should continue to refer to in CAMHS
Study dates
Whittington Education Centre, Magdala Avenue, London N19 5NF.
img Emergency department and ambulatory care
Thursday 26 February   

img ENT Update
Thursday 12 March    



If you would like to attend any of these study days, please email

If you have any feedback about a Whittington Health service, please feel free to email me. I’ll find the right person to help you.
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