News

8th Nov 2023

Practice Shutdowns

CLOSED FOR STAFF TRAINING 

The Surgery and Dispensary will be closed on Thursday 21st March 2024  from 12.30pm for staff training due to an MSE ICB Shutdown. Please call 111 if you require medical assistance on that afternoon.

Please collect any medication in the morning, Thank you.

The surgery will resume normal service at 8.00am on Friday 22nd March 2024.

Further shutdown dates

  • (no January shutdown)
  • (postponed February shutdown)
  • Thursday 21st March 2024
  • Thursday 25th April 2024
  • Wednesday 15th May 2024
  • Tuesday 18th June 2024
  • Thursday 11th July 2024
  • No shutdown in August 2024
  • Wednesday 18th September 2024
  • Thursday 17th October 2024
  • Thursday 14st November 2024
  • Wednesday 11th December 2024
  • No shutdown in January 2025
  • Tuesday 11th February 2025
  • Thursday 13th March 2025
Low Budget Low Carb Cover
17th Apr 2023

New free healthy eating low carb meal planners

Many of us often struggle to eat a healthy diet and with the high cost of living, this is becoming even more of a challenge. However, eating a nutritious diet can help to prevent long-term conditions such as high blood pressure, arthritis, IBS, Diabetes, and many more, plus reduce prescription medications and improve overall physical and mental health. Yet around 66% of the UK population aged over 16 are now overweight or obese, and poor diet directly contributes to this.

To support local people to improve their diet, health, and wellbeing, building on the success of the Freshwell low carbohydrate diet programme, GPs at Freshwell Health Centre, Dr Kim Andrews and Dr David Oliver, working with Mid and South Essex Integrated Care System (ICS), have developed two new low carbohydrate meal planners. One meal planner includes recipes that can be made on a low budget, with recipes costing a maximum of £1.25 per portion. The second planner includes vegetarian meals only.

Dr Andrews says “I hope the books help you to change the way you look at food and your relationship with cooking, and I hope along with that comes new-found vitality, less medications and in general a brighter future. Making a meal delicious and healthy does not require the skills of a chef – you’ve got this!”

Both meal planners are freely available via the Freshwell low carb website at https://lowcarbfreshwell.co.uk/meal-planners/ or the free Freshwell low carb app. There are also printed copies available in local libraries (at Sible Hedingham, Halstead, Earls Colne, Braintree, Kelvedon, and Coggeshall) which you can borrow, or photocopy for your own copy to take home. You can also pay for your own version to be printed and posted, via mail order, at https://lowcarbfreshwell.co.uk/product/freshwell-low-carb-manual/.

The team would love your feedback on the new planners, and any benefits that you have noticed since using the planners. Please complete their short survey via https://forms.office.com/r/yWbVSh7hdG. To thank you for your time, if you live in the Braintree District, you can apply for a free leisure centre pass to be used at Fusion Leisure Centres (limited copies available)- details available at the end of the survey

23rd Mar 2023

HRT Prepayment Certificates


The HRT Prepayment certificate will be available to purchase on the NHS BSA website from 1 April 2023. Prescriptions ordered/ dated before 1 April 2023 will be subject to previous charges.

Click here for more information:

NHS Hormone Replacement Therapy Prescription Prepayment Certificate (HRT PPC) | NHSBSA

20th Mar 2023

Additional services

As your GP practice, we are committed to providing you with the best possible care. In recent years, our general practice team has expanded to include new roles that will help us deliver better care to you and all our patients. We have added the following roles:

  • Pharmacist
  • Social Prescriber
  • Health and Well Being Coach
  • First Contact Physio
  • Cancer Care Support

Each new role is designed to help us ensure that patients receive care from the right healthcare professional, provide more tailored and personalised care, and help to increase capacity in our team.

By expanding our team, we can offer a wider range of services. The new team members will also help us to work more closely with other healthcare professionals in the community to ensure that our patients receive the best possible care.

You may not always need to see a GP for your healthcare needs. Depending on your situation, another healthcare professional on our team may be better equipped to provide you with the care you need.

We encourage you to speak to a member of our team to learn more about the new roles and how they can help you. We are committed to providing high-quality, patient-centred care, and we believe that our expanded team will help us achieve this.

1st Dec 2022

Colne Valley PCN December 2022 Newsletter

7th Nov 2022

Updates to Online Access

The NHS wants to give people better ways to see their personal health information online. We know that people want to be able to access their health records. It can help you see test results faster. It also lets you read and review notes from your appointments in your own time.

We’re now letting you see all the information within your health record automatically. If you are over 16 and have an online account, such as through the NHS AppNHS website, or another online primary care service, you will now be able to see all future notes and health records from your doctor (GP). Some people can already access this feature, this won’t change for you.

This means that you will be able to see notes from your appointments, as well as test results and any letters that are saved on your records. This only applies to records from your doctor (GP), not from hospitals or other specialists. You will only be able to see information from 1st November 2022. For most people, access will be automatic, and you won’t need to do anything.

Your doctor (GP) may talk to you to discuss test results before you are able to see some of your information on the app. Your doctor (GP) may also talk to you before your full records access is given to make sure that having access is of benefit to you. There might be some sensitive information on your record, so you should talk to your doctor if you have any concerns.

These changes only apply to people with online accounts. If you do not want an online account, you can still access your health records by requesting this information through reception. The changes also only apply to personal information about you. If you are a carer and would like to see information about someone you care for, speak to reception staff.

The NHS App, website and other online services are all very secure, so no one is able to access your information except you. You’ll need to make sure you protect your login details. Don’t share your password with anyone as they will then have access to your personal information.

If you do not want to see your health record, or if you would like more information about these changes, please speak to your GP or reception staff.

8th Sep 2022

CORONAVIRUS VACCINATION UPDATE September 2022

The National Booking Service are currently contacting all patients who are eligible for a winter COVID-19 Booster vaccination.  To take advantage of the National Booking Service’s offer please follow the instructions in the letter being sent out to you from 05/09/2022.  We will be offering a limited service for booster vaccinations at the Surgery and will keep our eligible patients updated via this website, like our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/FreshwellHealthCentre or follow us on Twitter Freshwell Health Centre (@Freshwell_HC) / Twitter

If you have COVID symptoms please DO NOT come to the surgery

Face Masks

Although we now do not require you to wear a facial covering or mask when inside the building we would never prevent you from doing so if you are more comfortable.  

Please be aware that there are some circumstances where we may ask you to wear a mask when being seen by one of our team.  We will always explain why, thank you for your understanding.

24th Jul 2022

2022 National GP Surgery patient survey - we are 129th in England

We have just had the 2022 GP Surgery Patient survey results and the Freshwell Health Centre have come out 129th of 6,418 surgeries in England.

We are pleased with the result but would like to finish higher next year. We would like to thank those patients who responded favourably to the survey to place us so high up the list. Our GPs and staff work phenomenally hard to deliver this level of service and that committment to caring for you is reflected in the results.

We have done so well in part to the phenomenal support we get from the CREAMER FUND and would like to thank them for the help they have given us over the years. By enabling us to bring diagnostics and other services in-house we are able to offer a service that our patients truly appreciate. The CREAMER funding helps us to do this.


To read the summary and to compare with other surgeries, read the link here:

UK's best and worst GP surgeries ranked - see how your doctors compares - Mirror Online

To see our detailed results, read the link here:

https://www.gp-patient.co.uk/patientexperiences?practicecode=F81020

To find out how you can help CREAMER fund, click here:

https://www.creamerfund.co.uk/