PHONE CAPACITY AND NEW APPOINTMENTS SYSTEM
We are in the process of changing our telephone supplier in order to secure a service that meets the needs of the surgery. After some disruption, we now have four incoming lines for patients dialing 0117 979 9430. When we have the replacement line installed we will move to 9 incoming lines. Phone lines are still busy between 0800-0900hrs and we are requesting that patients call for routine matters after 1000hrs. We are also upgrading our telephone software and are awaiting confirmation that this will allow queuing and for patients to direct calls to specific surgeries. Unfortunately, the practice is in a queue for the new line to be installed and the speed of progress is out of our control. We have a technical survey being completed in July and hope the new line will be installed by the end of the month.
However, the new appointment system is now running and is providing greater access to GPs. Patients that cannot initially get through will have the opportunity to speak to a GP where they have an urgent medical condition. Our advance booking appointments have also been re-opened after a two week period when they were blocked to allow the new system to bed in. More information about the appointments system can be found on the news letter, via the news flash and the appointments section of the website.
A number of patients have questioned why we have changed our system. When we looked at the access issues under the old system, and the results that it generated for our most vulnerable patients, we felt it was felt that it was not fair or appropriate for: long term sick patients; patients with young children; elderly; those with disabilities etc to have limited access to a GP because all of the same day capacity was allocated on a ‘first come first served basis’ to those that were able to queue in the morning or who got through on the phones. We feel strongly that access should be assessed according to medical need and that the only people that can judge that need are the trained GPs. In addition, prior to changing our appointments system, over 50% of appointments made by patients could have been seen by other health professionals. As a result, our appointment book was always filled and much of this was with minor illness. We want GPs to be able to spend time with patients that need to be seen specifically by a GP. Only a GP can decide who this is – hence the telephone screening by a GP. We have also added significant Nurse Practitioner and Minor Illness capacity that are allocated without the patient being called back. This is significantly speeding up waiting times for patients and freeing up GP time to deal with more complex cases.
In many cases, GPs are able to manage a lot of the medical queries over the phone saving patients the requirement to come to the surgery. However, the key point to note about the new system is that the telephone consultation only replaces the need for a face to face meeting if both the Patient and the GP agree that the issue has been effectively dealt with. As a patient, if, following the telephone call, you feel like you still need to see a GP, the GP will make that appointment for you there and then. This type of system was recently referenced by the King’s Fund (an independent charity) in a survey that included primary care and that stated, ‘Offering more services by telephone, email and Skype could also help relieve pressure and improve access for patients.’ (http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/jun/28/nhs-liberal-conservative-coalition). For more information on this type of appointment system, you may be interested to visit http://www.productiveprimarycare.co.uk/doctor-first.aspx where there is a useful video regarding the experience of another practice, and their patients, as well as more detailed information.
Welcome to Stoke Gifford Medical Centre
The doctors and staff at Stoke Gifford Medical Centre in Bristol are proud to offer the highest standard of patient-centred healthcare.We run many clinics for the management of chronic diseases such as asthma and diabetes and offer a wide variety of other medical services including antenatal and postnatal care, minor surgery, childhood vaccinations and well-person check-ups.
In addition to everything you need to know about the practice you will also find a wealth of health-related information in the menu on the right hand side. Please have a look around and do send us some feedback if you like.
Using Accident and Emergency
Watch the message from your GP on "Using A&E"
Your medical records
How sharing information in your medical records can help the NHS to provide better care. Read more here
Education for Doctors
On the second Wednesday afternoon of every month the Doctors will be partaking in mandatory education sessions to keep their knowledge up to date. As a result there will be limited capacity for appointments on these afternoons.
Please bear this in mind when booking appointments
Out Of Hours - when we are closed
If you need medical help when the surgery is closed, please call 111. NHS 111 is a telephone advice line and signposting service for patients with urgent health problems, but which do not need a call to 999. After assessment by a 111 health advisor, if you need immediate medical care they can arrange for you to talk to a clinical advisor, see a Doctor, or go to an appropriate alternative health care service.
This direct number to the out of hours service operates between 6.30pm and 8am weekdays and at all times over the weekend and bank holidays. Calls to the NHS 111 service are free from both landline and mobile phones (this number will only work outside the surgery opening hours).
BANK HOLIDAY CLOSING
The Surgery is closed on all Statutory Bank Holidays
Patient Participation Group (PPG)
We have a patient forum which meets on an evening 2/3 times a year. The meetings provide an important opportunity to hear patient views and use feedback to help us shape practice policies. If you would like to be part of our forum please contact Mandy White, our Operational Manager, on 0117 9799430.
The next meeting date is set for Tuesday 2nd September 2014 6.45pm at Stoke Gifford Medical Centre.
We are a friendly, forward looking medical practice providing the highest standard of medical care delivered by a supportive team who are sensitive to the needs of the whole person.
(Site updated 12/08/2014)