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I know we’re all up to our necks in Coronavirus blogs but I hope some of the following helps.

My Practice sent a message late last week saying nobody can have a face-to-face appointment with a doctor. B12 injections are still being given by nurses – as long as the patient doesn’t have a cold or any other flu like symptoms.

But what if they do? And what if you are being shoved to the back of the queue and being told your injection is non essential?

Each practice is going to have a different take on this so it will be down to individuals to try and find a solution from your Practice. It may be that they have something in place on their websites so check this too.

Perhaps there is someone close to you who would be able to give you an injection if you can get your ampoules on prescription?

Perhaps you could ask if a loved one who is well, could be taught to give you your injection whilst we’re in this chaos.

Or ask if there could be provision at your Walk in Centre?

Unfortunately your Pharmacist can’t give you your injection unless there is a Service Level Agreement (SLA) or a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) in place.

Remember that B12 is listed by the World Health Organisation as an essential medicine (see page 19) and B12 injections are necessary, just as insulin is necessary for a diabetic.

There will be a way you can get your injection and your Practice owes a duty of care to make sure it happens. We just need to try and stay calm and be a bit more patient during the crisis.

The following statutory NHS Bodies are responsible for commissioning health care services so if you are struggling please contact yours;

Find your CCG here if you are in England

Your Local Health board in Wales

NHS Scotland Health Boards

Local Commissioning Groups Northern Ireland

The news
I haven’t chosen to watch the news or read a newspaper for years years because for me it’s depressing and damaging. Currently it’s wall to wall panic with coronavirus.

I was annoyed with myself for becoming glued to the end of a TV report on Madrid and the Spanish State of Emergency on Sunday night where a lone person in a Square was told to go home and stay inside by the police.

This part of the whole crisis made me worry, it interrupted my sleep. I can’t imagine being separated form other humans in this way. I’m already walking around holding my arms by my sides like an Irish dancer, resisting my natural urge to touch people. We are social animals and although some personality types thrive on periods of solitude, mine really doesn’t.

The thought of not being able to walk freely, being isolated and being separated from their communities and families may be a bigger terror for people than than catching the virus itself.

So, I’ve had a word with myself, I will not watch anymore news and I’ll deal with any restrictions as and when they might occur.
I will not begin to panic buy.
I’ll do what I advise others to do and that is to set aside only ten minutes out of any 24 hours to worry and leave it at that.
Worrying does absolutely nothing to help anyone, but it does cause us great stress, so conserve your energy and focus on other things that you can effect.

Wildly unthinking behaviour
The meaning of panic -as if you didn’t already know!! Is: sudden uncontrollable fear or anxiety, often causing wildly unthinking behaviour.
This wildly unthinking behaviour clearly helps no one – but is naturally contagious.
I went to a supermarket on Sunday and asked a staff member how she was feeling, she looked exasperated, saying “It’s worse than Christmas“.
These staff are on the front line too, some feel physically knackered by their increased workload, some are also panicked but are carrying on. They’re dealing with fraught customers and the extremes of panic buying, refilling shelves as quickly as they can. They deserve thanks, kindness and calmness at this time.

If Anxiety is part of your B12 deficiency picture then watching the news is going to make you worry about the world at large and your own health. So if you can STOP it or at least limit it, what you do need to know will filter through.
Why not download apps such as Headspace or Calm these may help if you are struggling with rising levels of panic?

If this feels like Christmas to staff in shops and supermarkets then perhaps the best way we can get through this is to treat it like a Christmas break. If there’s nothing we can do why not use this period as an exercise in self-care, get jobs done that you have been meaning to do for an age.
Have Epsom salt baths
Sort out your wardrobe and cupboards, learn to fold like Marie Kondo.
Bake – if you have any flour
Declutter, so that when this calms down you feel renewed & ready to start living normally again
Start to learn a language or to crochet.
Make soup, there’s plenty of fresh food
Watch your old DVD’s and Netflix Watchlist.
Sort out your photographs
Delete unwanted emails
Finish your unfinished projects
Read that pile of magazines you’ve gathered up over the years
Get that jigsaw out
Weed the garden
Skype your loved ones, write letters, get in touch with long lost friends.

Rather than watching news try and make a point of only watching uplifting things. Watch comedies, funny is better for your heart and soul.

We’re not being made to stay inside, not yet at least, so get outside info the fresh air.
Do things when you feel like it and rest when you don’t.

Take some vitamin C and some zinc. Don’t do like I have in the past and take zinc on an empty stomach, it may make you vomit.

Pull together
If you have been caught up in the hysteria of panic buying but now you can’t move around your home with out banging into your purchases, it’s time to find your local food bank. These are not doing well at all. Remember not everyone could panic buy even if they wanted to.

This is a time to pull together (at a safe distance) rather than to separate, it’s a time to connect with neighbours, if you don’t know their telephone number already, get it and give them yours. You may need each other. Check on people living alone, drop a note through the door to see if they need anything if you feel you can.
Shop local, support the independents, they may still have loo rolls!
Keep safe, wash hands, hello with elbows and limit the news.
Best wishes