Apr 022020

Dr Peter Wands has been appointed as a GP Partner in a local Practice from the beginning of April. His last day consulting in the Practice will be Friday 3rd April 2020.

Dr Wands has been with the Practice since October 2015 and we will be sorry to see him go. He will be very much missed by both his patients and colleagues but I am sure you will join with us in wishing him every success in the future.

Dr David MacSorley is increasing his sessions to take over as Dr Wands’ successor. All patients who have Dr Wands identified as their usual GP will have Dr Dave MacSorley flagged in their records as their “Usual GP” to ensure there is a clearly identified GP to follow-up ongoing problems/correspondence/results etc. Should you regularly see one of the other doctors in the Practice then you may continue to do so. Patients can choose to see the doctor of their choice.

We are delighted that Dr MacSorley is increasing the number of sessions he works and will continue to work with us.

We are also pleased to advise that Dr Kenneth Duffy will remain with us following completion of his GP training year in August 2020.

In the meantime we will take on additional Locum cover as necessary.

Patients currently registered with Dr Wands need take no further action but be aware that he will no longer be available from Monday 6th April 2020 onwards.

Mar 272020

All of us have physical health and mental health. Just like our physical health, sometimes our mental health is not so good. Particularly in times of stress, as is the case during this coronavirus pandemic. It is well established that there is a close correlation between physical and mental health wellbeing.

It is vital that we all follow the government’s advice on social distancing and isolation to minimise the impact of the coronavirus on the more vulnerable members of our community. But social isolation and social distancing is leaving many people feeling anxious and low in mood. In addition, many patients with pre-existing mental health difficulties are finding their usual support being temporarily unavailable.

Lots of the population will be facing financial stress over uncertainty of work.

Patients will have previously arranged hospital appointments and procedures delayed or cancelled.

Many will be worrying about family and friends who are elderly, vulnerable or key workers.

Parents will be pushed to new limits, caring for children physically and emotionally. Tasked with educating and entertaining them at home, without usual support and trying to work.

It is particularly important that we look after our mental health in these challenging times. We have put together some resources and advice that we hope will provide some additional support over the coming months. Of course, many of the charities will not be offering a face to face service in view of the pandemic but may be able to offer support online or by telephone instead.


  • Edspace: an up-to-date mental health information website which provides a directory of mental health services in Edinburgh, mental health fact sheets, and links to mental health information.
  • Steps for Stress: Scottish government publication and simple guide to stressing less and enjoying life more
  • SAMH: a Scottish MH charity with information, advice and tips about mental health problems and online support
  • Feeling Good App: Developed by the Positive Mental Health Foundation. This is a video and audio programme which can be downloaded on to iPhones, iPads, Android phones and tablets.
  • NHS endorsed mental health APPS: A variety of apps designed to provide techniques to reduce stress, anxiety, low mood and encourage relaxation and mental health well being
  • Living Life telephone based CBT: NHS 24 offers a specialist telephone support service for people using the online Living Life to the Full computerised CBT life skills course. Living Life is open from Monday to Thursday 10am to 9pm and Friday 10am to 6pm on free phone 0800 328 9655. You can just self refer. Further information is available at www.nhs24.scot or from the Edspace website.
  • Financial Advice: A quick guide to “crisis response” resources to help individuals with immediate essential living costs.


  • NHS CAHMS Covid Resources: Useful resources for parents and carers, children and young people and those with autism, neurodevelopmental disorders and/or learning disability
  • Hands On Scotland: a website that provides help and practical advice for supporting children and young people’s mental health and emotional wellbeing. It has been created by Fife CAHMS team (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service)
  • Young Scot: National youth information and citizenship charity for 11-26 year olds


Anyone who is struggling with their mental health will benefit from a holistic approach, looking after all aspects of their health. 

Regular healthy nutrition

  • Reduce processed foods high in sugar and salt
  • Aim for 5 portions of fruits and veg a day
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Buy frozen fruit
  • Grow your own fruit and veg
  • Consider batch cooking and freezing portions
  • Live Well Eat Well

Reduction in alcohol consumption

No more than 14 units a week for men or woman, spread throughout the week and with several days of alcohol free


Regular exercise

  • Go for a walk at a quiet time round the block taking care to social distance.
  • Cycle to work if you cannot work from home
  • Consider a home exercise programme in your garden
  • Fitness Studio exercise video: NHS range of free online exercise including aerobic, strength and resistance, yoga and Pilates, dance including Latino and belly dancing
  • Follow “Just dance” videos free on YouTube
  • There are many celebrities doing free online exercises classes, e.g.


It is easy to let routines slip and become nocturnal when you become depressed. Difficulty getting off to sleep can be a sign of depression, whilst frequent early wakening a sign of anxiety. It is important to maintain a normal awake/sleep routine

Relaxation and Recreation

  • Limiting screen time, particularly in the evenings
  • Maintain social contact using online video conferencing tools
  • Maintain routine even if working from home. Don’t work in the evenings and weekends, but ensure you start at the usual time, stopping for coffee and lunch
  • Be realistic at what you can achieve in your day
  • Use extra time at home to finish projects that have been annoying you
  • Read a novel or download a book
  • Take up new hobbies or learning opportunities
    e.g https://britishmuseum.withgoogle.com/: Take a virtual tour of a Museum with Google Institute
  • Take 10 minutes out each day to practice MINDFULNESS
    • Notice the everyday
    • Keep it regular
    • Try something new
    • Watch your thoughts
    • Name thoughts and feelings
    • Free yourself from past and future
  • Headspace
  • Mindful breathing exercise video on YouTube

Have a plan for a Crisis

Particularly at times of prolonged heightened stress and social isolation, it is important to reach out if you are significantly stressed or overwhelmed. We are open for telephone consultations in our usual hours for advice and support. In addition, below are some other crisis numbers

Mar 132020

For the most up-to-date advice about COVID please visit our static advice page on the outbreak.

It is essential that we do everything we can to minimise the risk of COVID exposure to patients and staff at the practice.

To do this the GPs need to consult by telephone as far as possible, unless it is essential that a patient has to be seen in the practice, for example if they require an examination or test.

The Patient Service Advisers will therefore ask you when you ring what you are calling about and the default appointment will be a telephone contact.

We may very soon have to move to telephone consultations only as it gets more difficult to remain in the containment of the virus.

The latest advice from the government as of today is as follows:

  • If you have symptoms of fever, cough or new shortness of breath STAY AT HOME and self care while you are unwell.
  • You should not contact your GP unless you feel significantly unwell.
  • Patients will not be routinely tested for coronavirus COVID 19 – and this can not be undertaken in GP practices.

This most up to date advice on self management is available of the Public Health England website:


The NHS Inform and Health Protection Scotland websites are still being updated to incorporate the latest national advice. Please refer to these websites and the practice regularly for updates – including changes to local services.

We would also appreciate patients arranging to pick up their prescription directly from one of the Pharmacies that pick up authorised prescriptions from the practice. This can be done by advising us of your preferred Pharmacy when ordering repeat medication. This is best done online to reduce the number of visitors to the practice – if you can not order online please indicate your preferred Pharmacy at the top right hand corner of your prescription counterfoil.

Thank you for helping us to help you.

Feb 262020

For the most up-to-date advice about COVID please visit our static advice page on the outbreak.

There is a lot of information out there at the moment about the Wuhan Coronavirus, now named COVID-19, and much of it is changing/updating daily.

If you wish to stay informed, or are worried about some aspect of the outbreak then please use the links below to keep yourself up-to-date on the list of risk areas, potential symptoms and advice on what to do if you suspect you be infected:

The NHSInform website: https://www.nhsinform.scot/coronavirus

The Health Protection Scotland website: https://www.hps.scot.nhs.uk/a-to-z-of-topics/covid-19/

At the Practice, we are keeping outselves appraised of the situation as information is released, and following the advice coming from NHS Scotland and HPS. We will update our website, and our telephone system with any news that affects the normal running of the surgery.

Feb 072020

For the most up-to-date advice about COVID please visit our static advice page on the outbreak.

The spread of cases beyond China has prompted a change in case definition used within the UK.

So now, we would like to request that should you have travelled to China, Hong Kong, Japan, Macau, Malaysia, Republic of Korea, Singapore, Taiwan or Thailand in the past 14 days, or been in contact with someone with a confirmed case of the Wuhan coronovirus, that you assist us by not entering the practice in order to avoid contact with other people.

Actions for travellers returning from affected areas

  • All travellers who have been in Hubei Province in the past 14 days and have no symptoms should self isolate till the end of the 14 day period
  • Travellers who have been in any other affected area named in the case definition in the past 14 days and who have no symptoms, can continue their usual activities
  • Travellers who have been in any affected area and have acute respiratory symptoms (at least one of fever, cough or shortness of breath) should call their GP practice or NHS 24 using the number 111. Individuals should not attend their GP surgery in person, but should telephone for advice from home

Actions for anyone who has been in contact with a confirmed case

  • Anyone who has been in contact with a confirmed case in the past 14 days and has no symptoms should self isolate till the end of the 14 day period since last contact. They should contact their GP practice or NHS 24 using the number 111.
  • Anyone who has acute respiratory symptoms (fever, cough or shortness of breath) should call their GP practice or NHS 24 using the number 111. Individuals should not attend their GP surgery in person, but should telephone for advice from home

For more information and advice, please visit nhsinform.scot.

Jan 302020

For the most up-to-date advice about COVID please visit our static advice page on the outbreak.

Following advice from Health Protection Scotland regarding the coronavirus, we would like to request that should you have travelled to Wuhan City, China in the past 14 days, or been in contact with someone who has, that you assist us by not entering the practice in order to avoid contact with other people.

The following advice should be followed so we can avoid the risk of infection to patients and staff.

  • You should return home, stay indoors and avoid contact with other people.
  • Contact NHS 24 on 111 who will give advice about isolating for 14 days after return from the area
  • Contact NHS 24 if you develop respiratory symptoms within 14 days of travel to Wuhan City or have had contact with someone who has been there
  • Inform NHS 24 of your travel history and symptoms when you call
  • If become symptomatic do not leave home until you have been given advice by a doctor
  • Coronavirus does not usually spread if people don’t have symptoms but it is a precautionary measure that patients stay indoors to avoid the risk of spreading infection.

Thank you for your co-operation in assisting us avoid the risk of infection.

Dec 192019

The Winter 2019-20 issue of the Bruntsfield Medical Practice Newsletter is now available to read online.

In this issue we remind eligible patients that the flu vaccination is still available, we go over a few things to remember if you plan to hand in a sample, and we let our patients know about the services our Practice Integrated Care Pharmacist can offer.

Dec 102019

If you are on a repeat medication, please make sure you have enough to last you over the Christmas and New Year period.

The Practice is closed all day on Wed 25th and Thu 26th December 2019, and then again on Wed 1st and Thu 2nd January 2020 (Extended Open Surgeries are being held on Tue 24th December and Fri 3rd January to help compensate for the increased number of people who will need to be seen before and following the holidays).

Around this time we will also be short staffed due to holiday leave and trying to prepare for, and then catch up from, the public holidays.

So please don’t leave things until the last minute – prepare today.

For further advice on this subject, and more on being health-wise and prepared over winter you can visit the NHSInform website:


Nov 222019

We got confirmation today that we will receive enough of a supply of the intranasal flu vaccine to cover the clinics we wanted to run over the next three weeks, so we have released those appointments and they are available to be booked now.

If you are the parent of an eligible child then call as soon as you can for an appointment as they will go fast, and these will probably be the last clinics we run this year.

Thank you again to everyone affected by the child flu vaccine shortage this year for your patience.

Nov 192019

We have been able to release another flu clinic for eligible children to be held on Wed 27th November. We don’t have a huge number of appointments and access is first come first served, so phone asap to book an appointment for your child.

We hope to be able to release another clinic in early-mid December as soon as we can be assured of the vaccine supply, but as ever the website will be updated as soon as we know.

Nov 152019

We’ve been able to book and undertake a reasonable number of child flu vaccination appointment recently, but again our stocks are running low and we have only a handful of appointments left, which we expect to be taken very soon.

We have submitted our vaccine supply needs to the NHS and they are currently calculating stocks against the requests of all GP Practices and Schools. We hope to get confirmation soon that our requests will be filled, and as soon as we do we will be opening more appointments and we will again update the website.

Thank you again for all your patience.

Nov 042019

We have received a further small supply of the intranasal flu vaccine, so we have been able to release a limited number of appointment for all eligible children (whether by age or by illness) to be vaccinated.

The appointments are currently available on Wed 6th or Thu 7th November, and will be booked on a first come first served basis.

Please visit our full news article on the 2019/20 flu vaccination programme to check on eligibility before trying to book.

We will continue to keep the website update as and when further clinics are released.

Oct 252019

As many of you will have seen, especially with the Scottish Government press release on 22nd October, there are currently delays in being able to provide the intranasal flu vaccine for children this year.

The delay is happening UK wide and is happening at the manufacturing level.

Scotland’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr Gregor Smith said:

“We have been exploring how to best use the available stock based on evidence and clinical advice, and I have written to Health Protection Scotland and NHS Board Coordinators asking them to prioritise children with eligible health conditions and the two to five-year-old programme, similar to other parts of the UK.

“The school vaccination programme is currently continuing as normal. However, should there be the expected disruption to supply, it could lead to vaccinations in some primary schools being rescheduled.

“NHS Board areas are currently working to do that based on the projections we are receiving on the revised delivery schedule. Whilst this is unfortunate, it is completely outwith our control and we would continue to urge eligible people to be vaccinated as we know this is the best way to protect against the flu.

“This does not impact the adult flu programme.”

All General Practices have been directed to prioritise the small supply of intranasal vaccine that has so far been delivered to those children with eligible health conditions, such as respiratory disease, heart disease, diabetes, etc. We are attempting to contact those families at the moment.

At present we don’t know when the next supply of vaccine will be made available to us, but provided there are no more problems current projections indicate it could be sometime mid-late November.

We understand and share the frustration of all families registered with us at this situation and ask for your patience and understanding when we have to disappoint those trying to phone to book an appointment for their child to be vaccinated. Our Patient Services team have been given strict guidelines they have to follow with who they are allowed to book in. These guidelines have been passed down from the Scottish Government and NHS Scotland, and approved by the clinical team here at the Practice.

At the moment we ask families with children WITHOUT eligible health conditions NOT to phone in asking if appointments are available, but instead to keep an eye on this website. As soon as we get a larger supply of the intranasal vaccine, and we have appointments available to book, we will post a news article to let families know.

Thank you again for your understanding during this frustrating situation.

Sep 272019
Autumn 2019 newsletter

The Autumn 2019 issue of the Bruntsfield Medical Practice newsletter is now available to read online.

This quarter we remind everyone that it’s flu vaccination season again, as well as invite you all to read our FAQ. We also say goodbye to Karen Kirk, our longstanding CPN as well as encourage regular users of our website to subscribe.