St Mary's Surgery

This page has been set up to provide St Mary's patients with all they need to know about important announcements and surgery changes during the Coronavirus / COVID-19 pandemic. It is updated regularly.

You can also find more information on our FAQ page - see tab above.

Please see our latest workplace COVID-19 risk assessments below (July 2020):

The COVID-19 vaccination is free

Please remember the COVID-19 vaccine is being rolled out by the NHS 
and it is FREE

You will only be contacted by legitimate NHS bodies when it is your turn and at no point will you be asked to pay anything.

If you receive a call you believe to be fraudulent, hang up. If you have received a text message you think is suspicious, please forward it to the number 7726, which is free of charge and reports the text.

If you are suspicious about an email you have received, please forward it to

If you believe you are the victim of a COVID related fraud, please report this to Action Fraud as soon as possible by calling 0300 123 2040.

Updated 8.1.21

Message from Dr Katrina Young - second lockdown

As we begin a second national lockdown, my GP colleagues and I want to say to all our patients that St Mary’s Surgery is, and will remain, open. We understand that things are difficult and people may be worried about accessing health services but we want to reassure you that St Mary’s is open for business. 

All our normal GP services will continue to run including dressing changes, flu vaccinations, family planning clinics, baby clinics, cervical smears, blood tests and annual reviews. Many appointments will continue to be over the phone or via video link, but if your doctor or nurse asks you to come to the surgery, please do so.  

Safety and infection prevention and control remains our highest priority – for patients and staff alike. Therefore, all patients coming to the building will be screened at the door, including having their temperatures taken. We also encourage you to wear a face covering if possible. 
If you have a health concern or need the support of your doctor or nurse, please do not hesitate to contact us. We do not want anyone to feel they cannot be cared for by their healthcare professional at this critical time. We are here for all who need us. 

Date created: 5.11.20

Launch of NHS COVID-19 app

The government has launched the NHS COVID-19 app as part of the nation’s fight against coronavirus.

The app has a number of tools to protect you including helping to notify you if you have come into contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus, allowing you to report symptoms or book a coronavirus test and supporting the NHS in local areas so authorities can respond quickly and stop the virus spreading.

The app does NOT track you or your location. It does what it needs to while protecting a user’s anonymity. You can delete it from your phone at any time.

You need to have a smart phone – Apple iPhone 6S or newer or an Android phone running version 6 or newer - and can download the COVID-19 app from the App Store or from Google Play.

You need to be over 16 years to use it and the app is available in a number of languages.

Read about how the new NHS app works, how your privacy is protected and find further help and support here

Instructions for downloading the COVID-19 app for iPhone

Instructions for downloading the COVID-19 app for Android

Date created: 28.9.20

Changes in rules regarding face coverings

The law on the wearing of face coverings in England changed on Friday 24 July. As well as on public transport, people are required to wear a face covering in shops and other enclosed public spaces.
For your own protection and safety, that of other patients and the NHS staff who are caring for you, we encourage anyone attending the surgery to wear a face mask or face covering.
Thank you for your cooperation with this.

We know that some people are unable to wear a face covering because of a disability or severe distress, and the government has made provision for people not to have to wear a face covering if they have a legitimate reason not to. This includes:
young children under the age of 11
not being able to put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability
if putting on, wearing or removing a face covering will cause you severe distress
if you are travelling with or providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading to communicate
to avoid harm or injury, or the risk of harm or injury, to yourself or others
to avoid injury, or to escape a risk of harm, and you do not have a face covering with you
to eat or drink, but only if you need to
to take medication
if a police officer or other official requests you remove your face covering.
More details on government advice about face coverings can be found here.

There are also scenarios when you are permitted to remove a face covering when asked:
If asked to do so by shop staff for the purpose of age identification
If speaking with people who rely on lip reading, facial expressions and clear sound. Some may ask you, either verbally or in writing, to remove a covering to help with communication.
If you think you may be exempt or are unable to wear a face covering for health reasons, you can download and print off exemption cards to put on your mobile phones or to carry with you.
St Mary’s Surgery is not obliged to provide you with a letter exempting you from wearing a face mask due to certain health issues. This is because a letter is not needed. Any patient can download their own exemption card.  .

Date updated: 31.7.20

Update for St Mary's surgery patients

Please ONLY come to the surgery if you have a confirmed appointment or are collecting a prescription you know is ready.

Please only arrive a few minutes before your appointment time. This will enable the surgery to continue practising social distancing and help keep all our patients safe.

At the door ALL patients will be screened, including having their temperature taken.

We encourage patients to wear a face covering, where possible, when attending the surgery.

If you have an administration-related enquiry, do not come to the surgery. Please ring us and we’ll do our best to help you.

Updated 9.6.20

Testing for coronavirus
If you have symptoms of coronavirus, you can ask to be tested to check if you have the virus. Please visit the government's ask for a test page.

If you have questions about a test you've booked or are having trouble booking a test, you can call the customer contact centre on 119. The call centre is open from 7am to 11pm and is free from mobiles and landlines. More help can be found here.

Updated 3.6.20

Coronavirus tests

We are hearing a lot from the government and scientists on the types of tests available for coronavirus, and as we learn more about the virus, new tests are being developed and trialled. There are still a lot more questions than answers. Image courtesy of Science Photo Library
Currently there are two types of tests for COVID-19.
1. Swab test, also called the antigen test
The swab test ONLY tests for whether you currently have coronavirus.
You can request to be tested if you or a member of your household are showing symptoms (a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste)
The swab test is available to all adults and children over the age of five 
You need to have the test in the first 5 days of having symptoms
The test involves taking a swab sample from the nose or from the back of the throat
If your test results are positive, you and your household must follow government guidance for self-isolation
If your test results are negative, you can safely return to work, as long as you are well enough, you have not had a high temperature for 48 hours, and that anyone living in your household also tests negative
Find out more about the swab test.
2. Antibody test
The antibody test checks to see if you have had coronavirus in the past and shows if you may have developed some kind of immunity
It is a blood test, not a swab test
This test is not widely available yet. The government is rolling it out to health and social care staff, patients and care home residents first
However, even if the test shows that a person has some antibodies, there are still questions about how long immunity lasts and, currently, there is no evidence that people with antibodies cannot be infected again 
There also remain questions about if a person with antibodies can be a carrier or transmitter of coronavirus, even if they don’t catch it again themselves
Currently the value of the antibody test is limited to answering the question of whether a person has had the virus and in providing data and a greater understanding on the spread of the virus
Find out more about the plans for the antibody test.  
Date created 22.5.20

St Mary's is supporting key COVID-19 research study

St Mary’s practice is supporting vital COVID-19 research. As part of this, we are helping to carry out a national priority research study called PRINCIPLE.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19, are aged 65 or over, OR are aged 50-64 and have an existing health condition, you may be eligible to join this important study.

If you'd like to discuss taking part in PRINCIPLE, please contact us

If you'd like to know more about COVID-19 research and how you can contribute, please visit the Be Part of Research site, which is run by the National Institute for Health Research.

Date created: 20.5.20

Coronavirus testing for key workers showing symptoms

The Government has announced that all key workers in England and members of their households who are showing symptoms of coronavirus / COVID-19 will now be able to get tested.

Essential workers will be able to book a test directly for themselves or members of their household who are experiencing symptoms – a high temperature or new continuous cough.

Find out more about the self-referral test here.

Date created: 24.4.20

Minor Injuries Unit remains open

The Minor Injuries Unit at the Princess of Wales Hospital remains open for patients with injuries that need attention but are not critical or life threatening.

From Sunday 27 September, Ely Minor Injury Unit returns to its usual pre-covid opening hours of 8.30am-6pm seven days a week, with x-ray services available from 9am-5pm. The unit will see injuries up to two weeks old.

Minor injuries include:
•             sprains, strains, cuts and grazes
•             arm, foot and leg injuries
•             bites, minor burns and scalds
•             broken bones
•             minor head injuries
•             eye problems, such as scratches and foreign bodies in the eye.

Date updated:  30.9.20

Advice for parents worried about children's illness during coronavirus

Whilst coronavirus is infectious to children it is rarely serious. If your child is unwell it is likely to be a non-coronavirus illness, rather than coronavirus itself.

Whilst it is extremely important to follow Government advice to stay at home during this period, it can be confusing to know what to do when your child is unwell or injured.

Remember that NHS 111, GPs and hospitals are still providing the same safe care that they have always done.

Use this poster from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health
 to find out what to do if your child is unwell.

Date created: 20.4.20

Local support for those self-isolating or in a vulnerable group

Are you self-isolating? Are you in a vulnerable group? Do you need help with shopping or simply a friendly voice to talk to?

East Cambs District Council has set up a COVID-19 coordination hub. The hub is there to support people who need it. You can call  them on 01353 665555 from Mon-Fri between 9.00am-4.00pm or email if that's easiier for you.

The hub will also connect those who want to volunteer in Ely and our local communities. Find out more here.

Date created: 8.4.20

Order your repeat prescription online

It’s easy to order your repeat medication online. If you are already registered with SystmOnline, order that way. If you are not and wish to order online, please download the NHS app and follow the on screen instructions to register. Use the App Store for I phone or Google Play for android.


Please note you have to be aged 13 or over to be able to register for the NHS app.
If you are unable to order your repeat prescription online, click here to download a request form.   
You should complete the form and return it to us - either by post or by email. Please allow a minimum of five working days before collecting your medication.

Date updated: 2.4.20

New patient registration during Coronavirus pandemic

St Mary’s Surgery has introduced the new process for patient registration. Anyone wishing to register as a new patient at St Mary’s Surgery must complete the following steps.
Ring the surgery to let us know you wish to register. They will advise you of the process. 
There are two forms to complete: the GMS1 form and the patient questionnaire.
Download them from the links below.  
Please ensure you complete each section of the form fully in order for your registration to be completed. You should sign and date both forms.
Patients should complete both forms for each member of your family you are registering.
If you wish to register a child under the age of 13 (who is not a new born), please advise the surgery when you first make contact with us. St Mary’s will confirm the process for verifying your child’s identity.
If you are registering a new born child, please only complete the GMS1 form.
Once you’ve completed the forms, please scan or take a photo of them and email them to the surgery
Turnaround time to process your forms is ten working days.
Once your registration has been completed, the surgery will contact you to confirm your identity (ID). We do this via the NHS App.  You can find the App here.​​ The NHS App enables your ID to be verified without you coming to the surgery.
Once you’ve registered on the App you will also be able to order your repeat prescriptions.
Please DO NOT register for the NHS App before St Mary’s has contacted you to confirm your patient registration as this will delay your registration.

Any questions? Please do contact the surgery. Staff will be able to help you register.

Click here for the GMS1 form

Click here for the patient questionnaire form

Date created: 31.3.20


Blood pressure readings

A home blood pressure diary can be downloaded below and the completed diary emailed to the surgery. Please DO NOT use this email address for any other purpose

Click here to download your blood pressure readings diary

Date updated: 30.3.20

Opening hours for St Mary's dispensary and Lloyds Pharmacy
Please note the opening hours for St Mary's dispensary are:

  • Open from 8.30am-1.00pm
  • Closed from 1.00pm-2.00pm
  • Open from 2.00pm-6.30pm

Current opening times for Lloyds Pharmacy are:  
Monday – 9.00am-7.00pm
Tuesday – 9.00am-6.00pm
Wednesday – 9.00am-7.00pm
Thursday – 9.00am- 6.00pm
Friday – 9.00am-6.00pm
Saturday – 9.00am-5.00pm

Please order your medication 10 days before you are due to run out and allow a minimum of 5 working days before collecting your medication.

Patients collecting prescriptions from the dispensary or from Lloyds Pharmacy should only attend the surgery to collect medication when they expect it to be ready. Please note there may be a wait for you to collect as we need to limit the amount of people coming onto the premises.

Date updated: 23.9.20

Childhood immunisations in the light of Covid-19

Baby vaccinations are important

It’s important that if you’ve received a letter inviting your child for their vaccinations that you ring the surgery to arrange an appointment. Please remember routine childhood vaccinations save lives. 

Childhood vaccination appointments will now take place between 12 noon and 2.00pm.

In the light of COVD-19 if you, your child or a member of your family has a NEW persistent cough or raised temperature (above 37.8 degrees), please follow the stay at home guidance and DO NOT come to the surgery. However, once the 14 days have passed, it is important you do contact St Mary’s to arrange your immunisation appointment.

Please remember routine childhood immunisations boost your child's immunity against multiple diseases.

Date updated: 13.3.20

Coronavirus / COVID-19 guidance

A link to the easy read version of the government guidance on Coronavirus / Covid 19 is available here.

The government’s coronavirus guidance has been translated to help those whose first language is not English. Read it in your own language here.

Date updated: 3.4.20

Coronavirus / COVID-19 - Information for all patients

If you have a NEW persistent cough and / or a high temperature, however mild, stay at home and self isolate for 7 days - See for information on how to self isolate.

The surgery does NOT need to be informed and you do NOT need to contact 111 if your symptoms are mild. Patients will NOT get tested and GP surgeries cannot arrange testing.
If your symptoms continue to worsen, you should use the NHS 111 online symptoms checker. If you do not have online access or feel more unwell, contact NHS 111 and NOT St Mary's Surgery.  

Only come to the surgery if you have a confirmed appointment or are collecting medication from Lloyds Pharmacy or our dispensary.

Repeat medication can be ordered online or by posting your repeat slip through the letterbox at the front of the surgery

Read the full statement from the surgery 

See below for more information from the NHS on coronavirus/COVID-19:

NHS 111 Online -

Date created: 19.3.20

Coronavirus COVID-19

Frequently asked questions

This document aims to address the most frequently asked questions patients have about St Mary’s Surgery and changes of practice due to the Coronavirus / COVID-19 pandemic.

Created: 23 March 2020                                                                Updated: 21 September 2020

Surgery telephone – 01353 663434

Dispensary opening hours – 8.30am-1.00pm, 2.00pm-6.30pm  

Lloyds Pharmacy opening hours – Monday and Wednesday 9.00am-7.00pm, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 9.00am-6.00pm. Also open Saturday 9.00am-5.00pm.

Dispensary phone lines are ONLY open for queries from 9.30am-11.45am, and from 2.15pm-4.45pm.  Select option 3 from the telephone menu.

If you are collecting medication for someone else, please check BEFORE you come to the surgery if it is Lloyds Pharmacy or St Mary's dispensary you need to pick up from.

Website:                  Facebook: @stmaryssurgeryely


If you are ill with symptoms other than coronavirus and feel you need to see your GP, please contact us via askmyGP or ring the surgery. Where possible, consultations are taking place on the phone or via video call.

Only patients with confirmed appointments or who are collecting their prescriptions from St Mary’s dispensary or Lloyds Pharmacy will be allowed in the building at this time. Anyone entering the building will be screened, including having their temperature taken.

Please wear your face covering when entering the surgery building.

If you are coming to the surgery for an appointment, please do not arrive more than five minutes before your appointment time. This is to limit the number of people in the building at the same time.

I usually attend the surgery for my dressing change, can I still do that?
Yes. The surgery will have contacted you about your appointment. If, following your appointment, you still need to be seen again, your nurse will book your next appointment within four weeks.

I usually attend the surgery regularly for my injection, can I still do that?
Yes. The surgery will have contacted you about your appointment. If, following your appointment, you still need to be seen again, your nurse will book your next appointment within four weeks.

I usually attend the surgery for my blood test, do I still come in?
Yes. The surgery will have contacted you about your appointment. If, following your appointment, you still need to be seen again, your nurse will book your next appointment within four weeks.

I attend the surgery for an annual medication check for my condition, can I still do that?
No. The surgery will contact you and a review will be undertaken by telephone. We may ask you to do some home blood pressure readings and return them to us if you are on certain medication.

I am due a health check, do I still need to come to the surgery for it?
No. General health checks have been postponed for now. We have recall systems in place and you will be contacted if you need to attend a health check once normal services are restarted.

I am pregnant, do I still need to go for my check ups?
Yes you should continue to attend your maternity clinics. It might be worth checking with your hospital if there are changes to their local practices which might impact you. Don’t forget to maintain appropriate social distancing at your appointments.

You should also attend the surgery for antenatal bloods and immunisations as usual. And St Mary’s still has a small supply of flu vaccinations for pregnant ladies, if you missed yours this flu season.

Prescriptions & dispensary

I need a repeat of my medication, what can I do?
You can’t come into the surgery to order your prescription. Please either request online or post your repeat prescription in the surgery front door letter box when the surgery is closed, or in the red post box in the entrance way when the surgery is open.

Turnaround time is 5 working days. Please make sure you order your repeat at least 10 days before your medication is due to run out.

You should collect your prescription from your usual pharmacy, eg Boots, Sainsbury’s, our dispensary, etc.

If you are self-isolating, you should arrange for someone to collect on your behalf.

Can I order my repeat prescription online?
Yes. It’s easy to order your repeat medication online. If you are already registered with SystmOnline, order that way.

If you are not and wish to order online, please download the NHS app and follow the on screen instructions to register:

Use the App Store for I phone or Google Play for android.

Please note you have to be aged 13 or over to be able to register for the NHS app.

I have a query on my medication, how can I discuss it with the surgery?
You can still phone the dispensary on the surgery telephone number, choosing option 3 – see opening times above. However, we are having an unprecedented number of patients trying to call us at the present time and there may be long queues to speak to our dispensary team.

Alternatively, you can download a form – Medication Request / Query form – from our website. Please complete and return to the surgery. You can post it through the letterbox in the front door. You can also email the form to us.

I have a query about collecting my medication, where should I call?

If you have a query about collecting your repeat prescription, please contact the pharmacy you normally collect from. Please DO NOT ring St Mary’s dispensary if you normally collect your medication elsewhere.

Local pharmacies and chemists include:
Boots – 01353 661461
St Mary’s Pharmacy (50 St Mary's St) - 01353 772937
Lloyds Pharmacy instore at Sainsbury’s – 01353 663033
Lloyds Pharmacy at Princess of Wales hospital – 01353 664820
Lloyds Pharmacy (within St Mary’s Surgery) – 01353 662226
Tesco instore pharmacy – 0121 519 2677.

Can I get my repeat medication delivered now as I can’t leave my house?
If you or any member of your household is self-isolating, you should get someone else to collect your prescription for you – a friend or neighbour, or family member not currently living in your house.

If you really can’t get any help, A2B taxis have offered to deliver. Phone 01353 661010. You will need to contact them before 12 noon on the day you are due to pick up your medication. They will collect from St Mary’s at 4pm for delivery.

AAA Motorcycle Training has also offered to collect and deliver prescriptions between 8am-8pm, for free. Contact Sam or Lori on 07384 746025. 

I usually drop my sharps box and clinical waste back to the dispensary or to Lloyds, can I still do that?

St Mary's dispensary is taking sharps boxes from patients who originally received them from the dispesary. Likewise, Lloyds Pharmacy is taking sharps boxes from those who received them from Lloyds.

Unused medicine cannot currently be returned. Patients are knidly asked to hold onto them for now.


Can I still get my flu jab?
Yes. This year's flu vaccination programme is underway. If you have received a text from the surgery inviting you to book for a flu clinic, please do contact us to book your appointment.

With the threat of coronavirus, this year’s flu vaccination programme is being made available to a wider group of people through a phased approach. Please DO NOT book for a flu clinic if we have not yet contacted you. We will be in touch in due course.

If you are over 65 and registered to use SystmOnline you can book that way. We are currently asking those in other eligible groups to phone the surgery. (We would be grateful if you can avoid ringing on Mondays.)

All patients will be screened on entry to the building, including having their temperatures taken at the door. Social distancing rules will be followed and there will be a one-way route for each patient through the surgery. Staff will be on hand to help throughout.

Patients are asked to wear a face covering during their visit to the surgery.

Updated 30.9.20

Can I still get a shingles or pneumococcal jab?
Yes. Shingles and pneumococcal
 vaccinations are available for those who are eligible for them. The surgery will be in touch with you if you are in this group.

I’ve had a letter to say my child needs their vaccinations, do I still need to come to the surgery for that?
Yes. It’s important that if you’ve received a letter inviting your child for their vaccinations that you  ring the surgery to arrange an appointment.

Childhood vaccination appointments take place between 11 and 1.00pm.

Please remember routine childhood vaccinations save lives. They boost your child’s immunity against a variety of diseases.

In the light of COVD-19 if you, your child or a member of your family has a NEW persistent cough or raised temperature (above 37.8 degrees), please follow the stay at home guidance and DO NOT come to the surgery. However, once the 14 days have passed, it is important you do contact St Mary’s to arrange your immunisation appointment.
I’m planning to go on holiday overseas. Can I get my travel vaccinations?
No. The surgery has currently suspended its travel clinic services. We are NOT offering  travel vaccinations at this current time.
Patient registration

I am a new patient to the surgery. How do I register at this time?
St Mary’s Surgery has introduced the new process for patient registration at this current time. Full details of how to register can be found on our website here.  

Patients with long-term conditions

I am an asthma patient, what should I do?
Asthma UK's advice is to keep taking your preventer inhaler (usually brown) daily as prescribed. This will help cut your risk of an asthma attack being triggered by any respiratory virus, including coronavirus.

Carry your blue reliever inhaler with you every day, in case you feel your asthma symptoms flaring up. If your asthma is getting worse and there is a risk you might have coronavirus, contact the online NHS 111 coronavirus service. More information is available at
I have a heart problem, what should I do?
The British Heart Foundation has information about patients with heart or circulatory problems and coronavirus. Check

I have epilepsy, where can I find more information?
Patients with epilepsy can find help and support information on

I have COPD, where can I find more information?
The British Thoracic Society has useful information for people with respiratory conditions. Check

I have diabetes, where can I find more information?
Diabetes UK has published extensive guidance about coronavirus for people living with diabetes. Check

I support someone with dementia, where can I go for help or advice?
If you have any questions about supporting someone with dementia during the coronavirus outbreak, please call the Admiral Nurse Dementia Helpline on 0800 888 6678 or via email.

Other useful links to help you through coronavirus

Coronavirus and what you need to do -

Guidance on staying at home and away from others –

Mental health and wellbeing

I’m finding lockdown very stressful and it’s making me anxious. Is there anyone I can talk to? 

We all know that things are difficult at the moment. We know some people are feeling overwhelmed, anxious or even scared. It's at times like this that looking after your mental health and wellbeing is extremely important.  

Support is available for you. Lots of organisations, charities and community groups have resources to help you maintain good mental health and improve your wellbeing.

Find out more:

Sick notes / MED3 forms

I was signed off work sick before the coronavirus pandemic happened. What do I do about my sick note?
If you have a pre-existing sick note from your GP, you can request a further one. Ring the surgery and a form will be emailed or posted to you. If you want to receive it by email, you will be asked to give your consent. 

My employer says I need to have a sick note if I am off work at this time?
As per national guidelines, no MED3s will be issued for COVID-19 patients.

If your employer has asked you to self-isolate because you or a member of your household is showing symptoms, you can apply for an isolation note via NHS 111 online.


My doctor is referring me to a hospital, what is the referral process while the pandemic continues?
Referrals are continuing. The hospital will contact you about your referral and they will arrange your appointment. Please note you will not receive a letter from St Mary’s Surgery, you will hear directly from the hospital.

When you receive a confirmed appointment, you should plan to attend as per the details in your notification. The hospital will contact you if the appointment needs to be changed to a telephone or video consultation instead of a face to face at the clinic, or if the appointment needs to be re-arranged.

Please DO NOT ring St Mary’s Surgery about your hospital referral appointment. 

Addenbrooke’s Hospital appointment line is: 01223 274593
Hinchingbrooke Hospital is: 01480 416416
The Princess of Wales Hospital continues to not take any referrals at the present time.

 Updated 30.9.20

Other questions?

How can I volunteer to help the NHS and my community at this time?

You can join the NHS Volunteer Responders here.

East Cambs District Council has set up a COVID-19 coordination hub. The hub will coordinate local groups who can provide help and support to vulnerable households.  Click on the link to find out more.

I wear a hearing aid, where can I get replacement batteries?

If you normally go to Specsavers for your batteries, do still go there. They are open 10am-4pm from Monday to Saturday. Please note you will need to ring the bell and wait outside.
If you normally collect your batteries from Cambs Hearing Help, do call them on 01223 416141.

Coronavirus / COVID-19 – health guidance

If you think you have symptoms of coronavirus book for a test. Call NHS 119 if you have problems using the online service. 
Government guidance on coronavirus

You can find detailed guidance, help and support and all you need to know about coronavirus at  Follow the links to the information you need.

Click here for an easy read guide to coronavirus