We enjoy our work and we strive to provide safe, friendly, high quality care to you and your loved ones
- Please tell us what we are doing well – Your positive comments are great for our team morale and enthusiasm!
- Please tell us how we could look after you better – We will strive to enhance and improve our service
How likely are you to recommend our service to friends and family if they needed similar care or treatment?
Thank you for providing your feedback on our services, we are listening.
Please see some of the common comments we receive below, and some behind the scenes information.
|There aren’t enough appointments, and they aren’t available soon enough.|
- Appointment demand
Demand for appointments has become significantly greater than capacity and whichever way we manage our appointments, there is simply not enough capacity to be able to see everyone who asks for an appointment. We do triage requests according to clinical need and urgency.
We are seeing many patients at the practice with complex conditions, which can take longer to resolve or require repeat regular reviews with a GP. We are also being asked to see more people who actually don’t need to be seen at all. Many minor conditions can safely be dealt with at home or through discussion with your community pharmacist.
Long waiting times for hospital outpatient appointments and treatment mean many patients are returning to see us – often multiple times – about conditions for which they have already been referred. Either because their condition is getting worse, or simply to ask us to try to make the hospital work faster – something we cannot do. Related to this there has been significant shift of work previously done in secondary care onto GPs – dealing with this takes additional time.
- New clinical roles within the practice
Sometimes the GP isn’t always the best person for you to see, depending on your current health concern(s). To help you access support more quickly, you may be able to see a Physiotherapist, Pharmacist, Mental Health Practitioner, or an Advanced Nurse Practitioner at the practice. This allows you to receive the right care, from the right person, when you need it.
For information on the different roles within General Practice, please see this booklet.
- Patients not attending appointments (DNA)
Unfortunately we are still seeing a disappointing number of appointments going to waste, as patients do not turn up for their booked appointment. Please remember to cancel your appointment if you no longer need it. If you don’t cancel your appointment, and choose not to attend, this prevents us from being able to offer your booked time to someone else who needs it.
It will also be marked on your record as a DNA (Did Not Attend). If you have several DNAs, this could result in you being removed from the practice list.
Wasted appointments means unwell patients aren’t able to be seen. Please, help us help you.
- Staff sickness
We are still managing significant short and long-term sickness post pandemic. Many of our staff are still contracting COVID-19 and are isolating, and this has an impact on the number of appointments and results in cancelling of appointments.
|It takes too long to get through on the phone.|
- Service demand
Demand for our services has become significantly greater in recent times, and our reception staff have a very demanding role with a long list of other clerical duties. Our receptionists will answer your calls as quickly as they are able to. If there is a high volume of calls into the practice you may be waiting a little while as our team get through these calls one by one.
We understand it is frustrating if you are waiting a long time to speak to somebody, but sometimes phone calls can be complicated and take some time to assist the person calling. Calls like these will understandably delay the time to answer the next call as they take more time.
- Peak time
You may be waiting longer at peak times during the day as more patients are trying to contact the practice. The peak time for our phone lines is typically between 8am and 9am.
- Staff sickness
We are still managing significant short and long-term sickness post pandemic. Many of our staff are still contracting COVID-19 and are isolating, and this has an impact on the time it takes to answer the phone.
- Accurx (formerly eConsult)
If you need to contact the practice and are finding it difficult to get through on the phone, or don’t have time to wait in the call queue, please consider submitting an online request. You can contact us about a medical, administrative or prescription issue, and will receive a response within 2 working days.
- Booking some appointments from your mobile phone
If you’ve received text messages from us for a while, you might notice that they look a bit different now.
We recently changed our provider to Accurx
We understand that these texts might look a bit suspicious, if they ask you to click on a link, but please be assured that these messages are coming from us.
The links in these messages will direct you to a webpage. Depending on the message that was sent to you, you can then respond by answering some questions, providing information, attaching images, or even being able to choose an appointment time from an available list if we have invited you to visit the practice.
|Staff are unfriendly, or they are not smiling.|
Our staff always strive to be friendly and courteous. However, they have very demanding roles and they may be feeling the strain.
- Unacceptable and abusive behaviour towards staff
We are also seeing an increase in unacceptable and abusive behaviour from our patients towards our staff. Abuse like this will understandably have an impact on the mood and morale of the staff receiving it, and ultimately result in driving staff away from the practice and will only make the services we provide harder to deliver.
Please understand that we are all human and have feelings, and treat our staff with the kindness and courtesy you would expect from them.
If you believe that our staff are genuinely not meeting your expectations, please feel free to voice your concerns to the practice.
|I was kept waiting after my appointment time to be seen.|
We understand that it is frustrating when our clinicians run late and keep you waiting.
- Patients arriving late
Sometimes patients will arrive late to their appointment, which will have a knock-on effect for the patients booked afterwards. Sometimes this can’t be helped, due to traffic or bad weather. Appointment times are booked in 10-minute intervals. Our clinicians will always do their best to give you the time you need.
- Clinicians running behind
If you see other patients arriving and being called in whilst you are still waiting, it is likely that they are booked with a different clinician. Each clinician has their own list of patients booked to see them throughout the day. Some may run to time and others may unfortunately run behind. If you are concerned, please speak to reception and they can check the clinician’s list for you.
- Unpredictable emergencies
Due to the nature of our work, occasionally we have unpredictable emergencies, which we must deal with urgently. We ask for your patience in these matters and apologise for any inconvenience caused. One day the person with the emergency could be you!
- Patients arriving with multiple health concerns, or asking for relatives to be seen at the same time
A big cause of clinicians running late is patients bringing long lists of problems – or asking for relatives to be seen at the same time.
Please do not bring long lists of ailments and expect the clinician to have time to deal with all of them adequately and safely.
Every consultation needs to be carefully documented in your medical record. For complex cases or patients bringing a list of problems this sometimes takes almost as long as the consultation itself. Your appointment doesn’t end when you leave the consulting room.
Please do not ask for relatives to be seen during your appointment.
|The waiting room is empty.|
- Appointments over the telephone
We sometimes receive comments that you are kept waiting in an apparently empty waiting room. When you book your appointment, it is your choice whether you would like it to take place in person, or over the telephone. Sometimes the clinicians may have a list of phone calls booked before your face-to-face appointment. Therefore, the number of patients sitting in the waiting room may not accurately reflect the amount of consultations the clinician will carry out that day. Phone calls may also run over due to technical issues or difficulty getting through to a patient.
- Other GP responsibilities
The GPs also have other responsibilities alongside speaking to patients regarding health concerns. This includes:
- Processing the many results received by the practice daily (such as blood tests, scan reports, urine and various other sample results).
- Processing the many prescription requests and queries submitted to the practice daily.
- Sending referrals to various hospitals, and checking incoming hospital letters.
- Completing paperwork requested by patients and solicitors (such as medical reports, “doctor’s letters”, and exemption certificates).
- Visiting housebound patients at their home.
- Dealing with urgent queries on a daily basis.
- Supporting the other members of our practice.
- Dealing with complaints about access and lack of appointments. These have increased significantly, and whilst we appreciate your frustration these do take time to respond to, ironically taking us away from clinical duties
|Why do the receptionists ask what’s wrong with me? They’re just being nosey.|
It’s not a case of the receptionists being nosey.
The reception staff are members of the practice team and it has been agreed that they should ask patients “why they need to be seen”.
Reception staff are trained to ask certain questions in order to ensure that you receive:
- The most appropriate medical care,
- From the most appropriate health care professional,
- At the most appropriate time.
Receptionists are asked to collect brief information from patients:
- To help doctors prioritise house visits and phone calls
- To ensure that all patients receive the appropriate level of care
- To direct patients to see the nurse or other health professional rather than a doctor where appropriate.
Reception staff, like all members of the team, are bound by confidentiality rules.
- Any information given by you is treated strictly confidentially
- The practice would take any breach of confidentiality very seriously and deal with accordingly
- You can ask to speak to a receptionist in private away from reception
- However if you feel an issue is very private and do not wish to say what this is then this will be respected