Laindon Medical Group are using PATCHS as a tool to communicate with our patients by text, email and online. This online tool allows you to contact the surgery, and for us to share information, results and forms with you. If you receieve messages from the surgery they may come via a service called PATCHS. Please see for access, and - Patients for help and advice using service.

Your GP Practice team and how they are continuing to care for you and your family

Your GP Practice team and how they are continuing to care for you and your family

Dear Patients

I am writing this letter in response to the understandable concerns of some patients about access to their GP, and to other members of the primary care team, following negative newspaper reports and unhelpful comments from some officials and politicians who should know better. General practice, including your GP practice in Essex, has remained open throughout the Covid pandemic and continues to provide the best possible care to patients despite the obvious strains on the NHS and our colleagues in Social care.

Appointments are now delivered either face to face, or by telephone or online, and “triage” or sorting of patient needs and requirements is now routine in order to provide the most suitable response in terms of effective and timely access to the correct clinician. You will have noticed an increasing range of professionals within your practice and its wider team, as this is intended to improve your access to care and to relieve pressure on your GP.

A few numbers to illustrate the problems faced by your practice:

  • Nationally, 10% more GP appointments were delivered in the last year compared with two years ago, even though general practice is not an emergency service.
  • 5 million appointments were delivered in general practice in May 2021, as well as 8.5 million vaccination appointments. (General practice has delivered around 70% of the successful national vaccination programme)

This illustrates the increasing demand on the service, and at a time when GP numbers are generally falling, meaning more patients than ever are trying to see each GP.

Many of you have been affected in different ways by Covid including Essex GPs and their staff. Though it may take years for the NHS to recover, practices will continue to provide services to our patients and at the same time are preparing for a challenging autumn and winter. The South Essex Local Medical Committee is aware of this additional strain and will continue to support practices to care for you and your family.

I ask that you work with your practice to maximise the care they can give both to you and your fellow citizens, and to remember that we are all in this together.

Best wishes


Dr Brian Balmer

Chief Executive, North and South Essex Local Medical Committees

Breast Cancer

Breast cancer

Both men and women can be affected by breast cancer, so it’s worth being aware of the symptoms. If you feel a lump in your breast, upper chest or armpit, even if you can’t see it, it’s worth getting it checked. Other signs can be changes to the nipple, including inversion, crusting or rashes and changes to the breast tissue, shape or colour. You should speak to your GP if you’re concerned about these or other symptoms. Referral for further investigation is quick if your GP feels it’s needed.

Having a mother, sister or daughter (first-degree relative) diagnosed with breast cancer approximately doubles the risk of breast cancer. This risk is higher when more close relatives have breast cancer, or if a relative developed breast cancer under the age of 50. But most women who have a close relative with breast cancer will never develop it. If you might be at higher risk, take a look at the information on the Cancer Research page, for further advice:



Practice Updates

Sharing of Data for Research and Planning Opt-Out

The data held in your medical records is shared with other healthcare professionals for the purpose of your care. It is also shared with other organisations to support healthcare, planning & research. If you do not want your personally identifiable patient data to be shared outside of your GP practice for the purpose except your own care you can opt out by either clicking the link below or picking up a form in reception.

Please avoid calling the surgery to discuss as all the information is given on the link.