The Croft Surgery

Kirkbride, Carlisle, Cumbria CA7 5JH

Come and Join Us – you can make a difference!

This is a lovely opportunity to join the small team providing medical services to people in Kirkbride and the surrounding area.

The role is primarily as a receptionist but it is expected that it will expand to include administration work.

For the successful candidate we can offer 28 hours per week (minimum) with good job satisfaction and membership of the NHS pension scheme. Although experience may be helpful, it is more important that the person is calm and efficient and can work under pressure whilst being flexible and sensitive to the needs of the patients and Practice.

Please apply with CV and covering letter by 26/10/2018.

Interviews will be held on 08/11/2018.

Please contact the Practice Manager, Mrs J Paisley,  if you require any further information or have any questions about this post.

Practice Closure Dates – Protected Learning Time

The practice will be closed from 1pm on the following days for essential staff training. The practice will reopen the following morning as usual at

– 10th October – 14th November – 17th January 2019 – 13th February – 14th March

Cumbria Health on Call (CHoC) will provide out of hours cover during these times.

Telephone 111 with medical enquiries, but always call 999 in case of an emergency.

Extended Access Service

Evening and weekend GP and nurse appointments are now available to our patients – these are provided by Castlegate & Derwent Surgery, Maryport Health Services and CHoC.

What is the Extended Access Service?

The Extended Access Service provides evening and weekend pre-bookable routine appointments with GPs, Nurses and Pharmacists. The service is available in North Cumbria, which makes it easier for you to get a routine appointment at a time that suits you. The NHS 111 and the CHoC Out of Hours service is still available for unplanned primary health care needs.

When are these appointments available?

Appointments are available from 6.30pm to 8pm on weekday evenings; 1.30pm to 6.30pm on Saturday and 8.30am to 1.30pm on Sunday.

Who can access these appointments?

All patients registered with the Croft Surgery can book into these appointments.

Temporary residents can also access the service providing they are registered as a temporary resident with the practice.

What can I be seen for?

An ‘extended access’ appointment is just like an appointment at your own GP practice; they are for routine primary care health needs.

Will I see my own GP and/or nurse?

You will be seen by experienced GPs, Nurses and Pharmacists but you may not be seen by your own GP or Practice Nurse. If you would prefer to see your usual GP or Practice Nurse, please book an appointment directly with them during normal practice hours.

Will the clinician I see have access to my medical records during my appointment?

Yes. This ensures that your patient record is updated by the clinician you see and the information is available to the practice.

How do I book an Extended Access appointment?

You can request a weekday or weekend appointment via our receptionists. If urgent care is required outside your GP’s usual opening hours, please call 111. If your need is life threatening, please call 999 or go immediately to the nearest A&E Department.

How do I cancel an appointment?

To cancel your appointment you should phone us during  normal opening hours. To cancel a weekend appointment outside normal surgery hours call CHoC on 03000 247 247.

Where do I go for my appointment?

Weekday evening appointments will be available at either: Castlegate & Derwent Surgery, Isel Road, Cockermouth or Maryport Health Services, Ewanrigg Road, Maryport. Weekend / Bank Holiday appointments are provided by CHoC (Cumbria Health on Call) at the CHoC Centre, Wigton Hospital.

Flu Clinics

The flu clinics have been organised slightly differently this year because the vaccines are being delivered to the practice  in three batches. This means the date of the clinics are more spread out than in previous years.
We ask that all eligible patients attend one of these clinics if they want to receive a seasonal flu vaccination this year.

The first two clinics have been very well attended and unfortunately this has meant that we have had to turn some patients away and we recognise that this is very frustrating. The difficulties with vaccine supply are being experienced nationwide.

Our final flu clinic will be held at Kirkbampton Village Hall on Monday 5th November 9.30am – 12 noon. Please be prepared to wait for your vaccine as we run these clinics on a first come first served basis.

The doctors and nurses working at the clinics may need to carry out additional health checks while you are here and it is important that the clinics are safe for all patients. We hope that patients will understand that we cannot rush these vaccination sessions to reduce waiting times. 
We have planned improvements to the operation of this clinic to reduce the likelihood of inconveniencing patients, but it is possible that once again patients may experience a wait of  30 minutes or more at times and it is possible we will not be able to give vaccines to everyone who comes along.

The surgery staff would like to thank the volunteers from our Patient Participation Group who are serving refreshments at these sessions.


Staff Updates

Dr James Knox has now finished his 6 months with us and is now working at The Cumberland Infirmary. We hope to see him back here in the future.

We welcome our new GP registrar who started work with us at the beginning of August. His name is Dr James Cam and he is now seeing patients in the practice. His consultations are overseen by our GP trainer Dr Josephine Hewson.

Staff News

Our Healthcare Assistant Deborah Sloan has recently left the practice.  Nurses Sue Clark and Debra Williams will be carrying out the checks and tests that Deborah has been doing.

We are sure that patients will join the staff in wishing Deborah well in her new role at Wigton Medical Centre.


Opiate Based Medications

We are writing to some of our patients about the possible risks of taking opiate based medications.

Opiates include medicines such as codeine, tramadol, co-codamol, dihydrocodeine, morphine and oxycodone (i.e. Longtec & Shortec).

Whilst we recognise that patients don’t “want” to take medications, and that it is often necessary to control pain and enable functioning, there are lots of side effects associated with these medications. For this reason we will be inviting patients who regularly take opiate painkillers for a medication review over the next 12 months.

We feel that, where possible, it is important that we explore other management options or at the very least ensure that patients are taking the least amount or lowest dosage possible to control their pain.

Multiple research has highlighted that there is little evidence to support using long-term opiates for chronic pain, and suggests that there has been an underestimation of potential risks.

Possible side effects include:

  • Constipation
  • Sickliness (nausea)
  • Drowsiness (which can have implications on driving)
  • Erection problems in males
  • Increased risks of falls and fractures
  • An increase in sensitivity to pain (“hyperalgesia”)
  • Becoming “dependent” or addicted to opiate medication

If you would like to discuss reducing your painkillers sooner, or get advice about any other medications that you are prescribed, please make an appointment with one of the doctors who can discuss the options with you.

Happy 70th Birthday to the NHS!

What a lovely surprise – homemade cake delivered to the surgery from the students at Carlisle College, made from ingredients supplied by Pioneer Foods – to say thank you and Happy Birthday to their local NHS staff – we are very grateful and the cake is delicious.

And a thank you to a patient who has brightened up the office by bringing us some beautifully scented sweet peas from his garden. It is so nice to be appreciated in our local community.



Treatments for Hay Fever

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Following a recent patient enquiry, the doctors have been considering the management of hayfever with a yearly injection.  Although this was an acceptable treatment for hayfever several years ago the evidence is now lacking and there is significant risk of side-effects.

National Guidance does not endorse the steroid injection  – instead it advises steroid nasal sprays. These  do not always work immediately but once they are working are very effective in the management of hay fever. There is the option of buying a steroid nasal spray over the counter or having one prescribed for you.

The steroid nasal spray can be used in conjunction with tablet antihistamines and eye drops.

Steroid tablets maybe used as a very short term acute treatment but regularly taking steroid tablets would risk side-effects such as bone thinning, stomach ulceration and glandular changes.

  We would recommend using a steroid nasal spray for ongoing hayfever management

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