21st Mar

Diabetic Eye Screening

Diabetes is the second largest cause of preventable blindness in adults, so don’t lose sight of your screening appointment and miss the wonders of the world.

From 1st April 2024, the East Anglia Diabetic Eye Screening Programme is changing. This will be split into two new programmes: Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, and Norfolk and Waveney.

These services will be provided by InHealth Intelligence Ltd on behalf of the NHS.

If you use this service, you will be invited to your next screening appointment. You do not need to do anything.

If you have any questions please email:
Or call the Bookings line:
01223 628800

18th Mar

Bariatric surgery guidelines

Bariatric surgery may include laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding, gastric bypass, sleeve gastrectomies and duodenal switch.  They can be accessed on the NHS via strict criteria for referral and ongoing engagement which patients and their GPs may struggle to access, and privately in the local area, regionally, nationally and abroad.  These patients will all potentially access NHS general practice services for their referral and/or follow-up.

How do patients access NHS services locally?
Patients access NHS bariatric surgery services via the Tier 3 weight management system, and must complete the necessary Tier 3 assessment and management processes to meet the criteria for surgery.

Patients may be referred to Tier 3 weight management if they have:
BMI >40 kg/m2; or (BMI = Body Mass Index – defined by weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in metres (kg/m2.) or:
BMI >35 kg/m2 with other significant disease that could be improved with weight loss (diabetes or hypertension, for example); orare an obese individual with complex needs who has not responded to lower Tier interventions.

Bariatric surgery forms an integral part of the management of patients with severe obesity where other interventions have been unsuccessful.  The MDT assessing patients for referral for Bariatric Surgery will ensure that patients fulfil the following criteria:

BMI >40 kg/m2;  or:
BMI >35 kg/m2 with other significant disease (such as type 2 diabetes or hypertension) that could be improved with weight loss; consider expediting people with BMI >35 kg/m2 with recent onset type 2 diabetes.

And, ALL of the following:

age over 18 years old;  and all appropriate non-surgical measures have been tried; and the person has received and completed intensive management in a specialist (Tier 3) obesity service for 12 months (BMI<50 kg/m2) or 6 months (BMI>50 kg/m2); and the person has attended ≥80% of required Tier 3 weight management sessions; and the decision for suitability for bariatric surgery has been made after discussion between the Tier 3 obesity service and the Tier 4 surgery service.

The exceptional cases referral process can be used for patients who fall outside of this criteria.

What follow-up is needed?
The bariatric surgical provider is responsible for the organisation of structured, systematic, and team-based follow-up of patients for 2 years post-surgery.

After discharge from bariatric surgery service follow-up, all people should be offered monitoring of nutritional status and appropriate supplementation according to need in line with recommendations made in NICE clinical guidelines.  This care should be offered by general practice.  It is important to note that these patients will very often be requiring regular follow-up for other co-morbidities in any case.  0 

Cosmetic procedures (e.g. abdominoplasty) to remove any excess skin folds that may result from rapid weight loss are not routinely funded on the NHS locally, post bariatric surgery.

Patients treated privately for bariatric surgery will only be eligible for NHS Tier 3 weight management services if they met the criteria for access to Tier 3 services at the time of their bariatric surgery.

Patients for whom Bariatric surgery has failed, should be referred back to the Tier 3 service for an MDT assessment and appropriate ongoing management.

What about private patients who’ve had surgery in the UK?
Private patients who have had their surgery in the UK should be receiving the same 2 year follow up from their provider as NHS patients; this is part of the cost of the surgery and so while you may receive communication from the private provider inviting you as the patient’s GP to take over care, care should remain with them until the 2-year point.  A request to hand over care prior to this would require a shared care framework and the agreement of the GP to accept this. This is not core work, and the surgery are able to decline.     

What about private patients who have had surgery abroad?
This is an increasingly common scenario for both primary and secondary care. On the NHS pathway, the pre-op advice process is a year long, for good reason. Short term fixes that only provide the surgery are much less successful, and the operation is merely a weight-loss tool, and only a part of the answer. 

The most immediate medical need for this group of patients is the recognition of complications such as late leaks or internal hernias. These present with continuous vomiting, dysphagia, intestinal obstruction, or severe abdominal pain and require emergency admission. The patient’s history should be flagged, and the bariatric team would need to see them and manage them acutely.   

NHS bariatric services are not able to provide routine follow up to patients who had their surgery done overseas, but will have to manage any surgical bariatric emergencies. These patients should be advised to seek a private bariatric follow up programme in the UK for a two-year period –these are available, and many accept self-referrals.   After this, the monitoring process is the same as for any other patient and the above guidelines should be followed.   If the primary operation did not work in terms of achieving the desired weight loss, it is extremely unlikely the NHS would help further unless a patient had intolerable side effects requiring reversal, or acute life-threatening complications. It would be worth re-referring to NHS services in case the patient may be able to access GLP1 treatment.

In terms of GP follow-up for these patients, their longer-term monitoring would fall under general practice after a two-year period.  In the interim, local guidance states that the Tier 3 service will only accept patients who met those criteria prior to surgery.  We would recommend that patients fulfilling those criteria are referred into the Tier 3 service.  For patients falling outside of that with a follow-up need, we would advise contacting the local bariatric service for advice. 

29th Feb

Pharmacy First Launch

The new Pharmacy First Service will enable community pharmacists to complete episodes of care for patients without the need for the patient to visit their general practice. This, alongside expansions to the pharmacy blood pressure checking and contraception services, will save up to 10 million general practice team appointments a year and help patients access quicker and more convenient care, including the supply of appropriate medicines for minor illness.

The Pharmacy First Service builds on the previous Community Pharmacist Consultation Service (CPCS) by enabling community pharmacies to manage patients for seven common conditions, following specific clinical pathways.

The seven conditions are:

Clinical pathway

Age range

Acute Otitis Media

(inflammation in the middle ear)

1 to 17 years


1 year and over

Infected insect bites

1 year and over


18 years and over


12 years and over

Sore throat

5 years and over

Uncomplicated urinary tract infections

Women 16-64 years

1st Dec 2023

Veteran Friendly Accreditation for Hampton Medical Centre

We are pleased to announce that Hampton Medical Centre has been accredited as an Armed Forces friendly GPO practice.

This means that, as part of the health commitments of the Armed Forces Covenant, we have a dedicated clinician who has a specialist knowledge of military related health conditions and veteran specific health services. This is important in helping ex-forces to get the best care and treatment.

If you are ex-forces, please let your Practice know to help ensure you are getting the best possible care.

21st Nov 2023

New Mental Health Text Line – HEAR 85258

A new mental health free text messaging support service has launched in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough to help those who are struggling to cope.

Launched by NHS Cambridgeshire & Peterborough and in partnership with the national service SHOUT, the free to use text service HEAR 85258 provides real-time support to people of all ages who are struggling with their mental health.

When texting the word HEAR to 85258, the person will be connected to a trained volunteer. During the confidential and anonymous conversation, the texter will be supported and signposted to local and national mental health services.

28th Oct 2023

OnLine Medical Record Access

Did you know that since April 2015, you don’t have to wait on the phone to speak to your GP surgery? Just like online banking, you can look at your GP records on a computer, a tablet or a smartphone, using a website or an app.

You can choose to:

• Book and cancel appointments with your doctor or nurse online, when it suits you. Your surgery will choose which appointments can be booked online.

• Order repeat prescriptions online. Some patients have found that they save money and time as they don’t need to make a special trip to their surgery to order repeat prescriptions.

• Look at part of your GP records online. You can look at your records whenever you want, even from the comfort of your home, and find answers to questions you may have without ringing your doctor.


Online services are free to use and are just another way of contacting your surgery. You can still ring them or go to your surgery in person like you do now. You can also still request your full printed records from your surgery. They may charge you for this. Anyone can benefit from using online services

8th Sep 2023

Drugs for Insomnia (Z-Drugs)

Hypnotic medication or Z-drugs (Zopiclone and Zolpidem) have been used to relieve the symptoms of sleeplessness, however they do not treat the underlying cause.

NICE guidance recommends that doctors should consider using non-medicine or alternative treatments for sleeplessness.

A key concern when prescribing hypnotics is the development of tolerance to their effects and little benefit from long term consumption. Dependence is an unwanted result of long term use. Withdrawal effects can include anxiety, panic attacks, poor memory and confusion to name a few.

A decision has been made by Hampton Medical Centre, not to routinely prescribe Hypnotics or Z-drugs for insomnia.

No Z-drugs would be prescribed to any person under 60 years of age in routine for sleep problems unless clinically decided as short term use under special circumstances only.

Over 60 years of age, it’s on a clinician’s discretion based on individual circumstances.

5th Sep 2023

Food Bank Vouchers

Hampton Medical Centre are able to provide food bank vouchers to those families who are in need of food. To access this facility you need to contact the surgery on 01733 556 900 and ask for the social prescriber who will triage your needs. 

The food bank facility is based at CSK Hampton Church between 7pm and 9pm each Thursday. Further information can be found here

4th Sep 2023

Shingles Vaccine

If you are aged 70-79 or aged 50 and over with a severely weakened immune system, you can book your shingles vaccine at your GP practice.

You can also book after your 65th birthday if you turn 65 after 1st September 2023.

Find out more

21st Aug 2023

Medication Requests for Flying

We are occasionally asked by patients to prescribe sedating medication for flying. 

We regret that henceforth we are not able to facilitate these requests on the grounds of patient safety and our need to prioritise the delivery of NHS care on the basis of patients' clinical needs.

Sedating medication, e.g. benzodiazepines such as diazepam, can render someone either paradoxically aggressive, or less able to follow instructions in an emergency, thus putting crew and other passengers at risk.

Sleeping tablets similarly have no indication for flying, and again could make a passenger difficult to rouse or transfer if there was a genuine in-flight emergency. Often passengers mix these medications with alcohol, with deleterious consequences. We would not wish you to to be barred from a flight or face prosecution, or find yourself incapacitated due to the unpredictable effects of said medication. The drug driving legislation which came into effect in recent years would also potentially prohibit onward driving from an airport.

Flight anxiety should be treated by Cognitive Behavioural Therapy - a form of counselling, which has long lasting benefits and is safe. Airline carriers offer excellent courses for free, so do speak with your flight provider to arrange to go on a course well in advance of when you know you will be flying.

It is not within the remit of the NHS to render someone fit to travel on a voluntary holiday or business trip, and due to the inexorable demands currently facing general practice, we make no apology for prioritising NHS care for patients on the basis of their clinical need. 

We acknowledge there may be occasion when you have previously received a prescription for this purpose. We regret that we will be unable to agree to such requests henceforth. This is a joint decision, unanimously made by all senior clinical staff within the practice.

Patients are reminded that they are able to arrange a consultation at a private travel clinic should they wish to pursue the option of in-flight medication further, but we cannot accommodate their request and so would politely ask that they respect this universal practice policy from 21 August 2023.

We have been supported in the drafting of this policy by Cambridgeshire Local Medical Committee.