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Latest News

Christmas and New Year Closures

Please be aware that the practice (all three surgeries) will be closed on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New year's Day.  If you have an urgent medical need that cannot wait until the surgery is open, please call the NHS 111 Service by dialling 111.

Wednesday 25 December - Christmas Day - CLOSED

Thursday 26 December - Boxing day - CLOSED

Friday 27 December - Normal opening hours at all three sites

Saturday 28 December - Open as usual at Hemyock 8am to 11am

Monday 30 December - Normal opening hours at all three sites

Tuesday 31 December - Normal opening hours at all three sites

Wednesday 1 January - New Year's Day - CLOSED

Thursday 2 January - Normal opening hours at all three sites

Community Pharmacy Opening times over the Festive Period

If our dispensaries are closed, medicines may be accessed in an emergency from a community pharmacy. Please find the opening times of pharmacies in the surrounding towns over the festive period. Out of Hours Pharmacies

Please remember that Hemyock Dispensary is open on a Saturday morning 8:00am-11:00am.


You are now able to pay by Debit card

You can now use your debit card (not credit cards) to pay for your prescriptions, travel vaccinations, private medicals (e.g. HGV), and other services that are not provided on the NHS. 

You will still be able to pay by cash or cheque if you prefer.


Flu Vaccinations for children

Unfortunately, there is still an issue with the supply of the nasal flu vaccine for children. If you have already put your child's name down, the surgery will contact you when the vaccine is available.  If your child has been invited and you have not yet made contact, please ring to be added to the waiting list.  You can find further information here - Child Flu Leaflet

Please continue to check the web-site for any updates.

Getting Your Medicines if there's a 'No Deal' Brexit

The NHS has issued guidance regarding the impact of a 'no-deal' Brexit on the supply of medicines.  Click here to read the guidance -> NHS Guidance. 


Latest Minutes from the Patient Participation Group

The latest notes of the Patient Participation Group meeting are now available in the Patient Participation Group Section of the website.



Booking Appointments On-line

We are increasing the number of appointments that are available to be booked by patients on-line.  From July, at least 25% of all practice appointments will be available.

GP Appointments.  Up to six appointments for each GP working each day will be available to book.  These are 10-minute appointments so if you need longer, please ring the surgery and speak to Reception.

Blood tests will also be available to book on-line.  Please note that these should only be booked if you have been asked to have a blood test by a GP or a hospital.

It will also be possible to book cervical smear appointments and when the flu vaccination appointments are added later in the year they will be available to book on-line as well.

When you have logged-on and clicked 'New booking' you will see a list of the various appointment types available - simply click on the one you want to book.

If you cannot find a suitable appointment on-line, please ring Reception who will be able to help you as they will have access to other appointments.


Watch the latest Video on Cervical Screening

Cervical Screening is one of the best ways to protect yourself from cervical cancer.  You can watch the latest video from Cancer Research UK on cervical screening by clicking here.


Potential Telephone Scam

We have received two reports, one from a patient at the Blackdown Practice and one from another Practice that they have received telephone calls from someone claiming to be from an on-line pharmacy. The person calling knows the patient’s name, on one occasion the date of birth and says that they understand that the person they are calling is on repeat medicines.

This is a scam. We suggest that you hang up the telephone. Please do not supply them with any personal details and do not telephone them back.

We are reporting this to the local fraud team.

Farewell to Dr Sue Brocklesby and Welcome to Dr Tom Winter

It is with great sadness that we are saying goodbye to our Senior Partner, Dr Sue Brocklesby, who retired after 32 years as a GP, 19 of which have been at Blackdown.  She will be greatly missed by patients and everyone at the Practice but we hope to see her for the odd locum session here and there.

Dr Brocklesby’s patients will be transferred to Drs Spicer, Sherwin and our new Partner, Dr Thomas Winter, who will be joining us on the 22 of October.

We have had a lot of comings and goings over the last few years but have been very fortunate to recruit excellent doctors at a time when many other Practices are struggling to do so.

Drs Leach (now our Senior Partner) and Winter will predominantly cover Hemyock

Drs Barnes and Parrett (nee Perry) will work between Dunkeswell and Hemyock 

Drs Spicer and Sherwin will predominantly cover Churchinford 

Dr Murray remains as versatile as ever and will be working at all three sites. 

Evening and weekend appointments

We are pleased to announce that we are working with Devon Doctors so that GP appointments are now available for our patients at Tiverton Hospital during the weekday evenings and at weekends.

To access these appointments please call Devon Doctors on 01392 822354. This telephone line is open 8:00am-6:30pm Monday to Friday and 8:00am-1:00pm over weekends and bank holidays.

Please note the 01392 822354 is for booking weekday evening and weekend appointments only. If you need an appointment at your usual surgery during the day, you can contact us on the usual surgery numbers between 8:30am-6:00pm Monday to Friday.

To access the out of hours service, you still telephone 111.  

Changes to the Way we Book Appointments

Please read our Newsletter to find out about the changes we are making to the way appointments are booked.  Summer 2018 Newsletter

Health Visitor Drop In Sessions at Hemyock – New for 2018 

From the 8th January 2018, the Health Visitor drop in sessions at the Practice are moving to the Blackdown Healthy Living Centre, Riverside, Hemyock EX15 3SH. This is a great venue, very light and airy with good parking on site.


The sessions will now be on a Monday afternoon between 1pm and 3pm. Your new Health Visitor, Emma Bath, will be there on the last Monday of every month between 1pm and 2pm; the other Monday drop in sessions will not be supervised by a Health Visitor but will give the opportunity for new parents and carers to meet. Play equipment will be available and there are tea and coffee making facilities (any small donation would be welcomed) and from mid-January there will be scales available to weigh your baby at any time the centre is open. For opening times please see their website . The telephone number for the centre is 01823 680 687


Please note: the centre is closed on Bank Holiday Mondays.


Any queries, the Culm Valley Health Visiting Team can be contacted on 01884 836004.

Changes to Opening Hours at Churchinford Surgery

Following consultation with the practice's Patient Participation Group and approval from NHS England, Churchinford Surgery will be closed on Friday afternoons from 12.30pm starting on Friday September 15.

Appointments will still be available at Hemyock and the dispensary there will be open from 14.00 to 18.00.  Phone calls to Churchinford Reception will also be answered at Hemyock.

For more detail on the reasons for the closure please click on the 'Read our Newsletter' above.

CQC Inspection - The Practice was rated as Outstanding

The practice was inspected by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in June 2016.  It was rated as Outstanding.

You can read the report here -> CQC Inspection report

The CQC also issued a press release which can be read here -> CQC Press Release


Health News from the BBC and the NHS

BBC Health
NHS Choices Behind the Headlines
Call 111 when you need medical help fast but it’s not a 999 emergencyNHS ChoicesThis site is brought to you by My Surgery Website