The following questions were asked at the last Patients' Open Meeting at the Practice on Monday, 09 June 2019 Minutes of the Meeting _________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Q Not everyone has internet access and many patients are technophobic, therefore, how will the new systems work for all? A It will still be possible to telephone the Practice and also visit in person. The Receptionists will ask why you need to see a doctor to triage patient needs and ensure they see the appropriate professional. RF stressed that a lot of work is still taking place ‘behind the scenes’ to ensure that the correct balance of appointments are available. This includes a review of the opening time for appointments online.
Q At the end of my consultation I was asked by my Doctor to make another appointment for a month later. I was unable to do this because one was not available. A The concept of ‘my doctor’ is changing as the practice develops a multi-disciplinary team. Most GPs are in the Practice for three or four days a week, in addition it may be that they are on annual leave or attending other meetings on the day an appointment is requested. Services at the Practice are therefore delivered via a team based approach rather than ‘your doctor’ although the Practice does strive for continuity of care when necessary for longer term chronic conditions. Alternative ways of delivering services are being introduced to ‘free up’ doctors to provide more appointments.
Q Is text messaging used by the Practice? A Yes and it can also be used by patients to cancel appointments.
Q What have been the demographic responses to the new changes? Are there drop-in sessions available? A The latest service to be introduced is Engage Consult and this had had a slow, soft launch. This was deliberate to ensure that the Practice was not overwhelmed. Therefore it is too early to conclude responses, however to date there are approximately 6/12 communications per day and these are from a wide range of demographics. The change in the way patients communicate with the Practice was evident in this year’s Patients’ Survey. Three years ago 95% of the responses were by paper this year 95% replied online. There are plans to provide ‘drop-in’ sessions and details will be publicised in due course.
Q Can a patient ask a Doctor to call them back to discuss the outcomes of recent treatment? A If a patient has received treatment at a hospital it is the hospital that will provide the results and discuss the outcome with the patient. A GP will only respond to an investigation they carried out. The patient could also use Engage Consult to resolve the matter.
Q How is information about SHCGP shared? A This is done in a number of different ways, via the Practice’s newsletter and website, Mjog (the texting service), the PPG website and through the LOSRA newsletter and ‘Sunbury Matters’. PT ended the meeting by informing the patients that the Artwork in the Waiting Room will be replaced in the next few weeks and it is hoped to include children’s artwork in future displays. DH added that in response to suggestions at a previous Open Meeting the dates for the next Open Meetings will be in the autumn and spring, rather than the winter and summer. It is hoped that this might facilitate a greater number of patients attending the meetings.
Q Could Doctors make their own appointments, thereby ensuring that a request to see a patient within a month can happen? A. This is being considered as part of the Engage Consult pilot project.
Q Is the size of the site being offered at Ceaser Court comparable to SHC? A The practice is trying to arrange a meeting with Spelthorne Borough Council and the CCG to discuss what the council are able to offer including the size of the space available, the rental and service charge costs and access/ parking availability. It is hoped that a meeting will take place shortly.