WESTDALE LANE SURGERY – ANALYSIS OF PATIENT SURVEY FOR DISCUSSION BY PPG
Dated: 27 February 2012
General. Of those who took part in the survey, almost two thirds were female and of the total, 58% were retired with only 20% being in employment. Over 58% of respondents suffered from at least one long term condition. No-one below the age of 24 took part at all with the greatest number being over 50. Over 86% were home owners and of the total, 93% were white and 3.46% were of mixed race origin. This is close to mirroring the make up of the practice population. Whilst conjecture can be made about the make up of the respondents, it would be wrong to speculate. It is not feasible to coerce anyone into participating if there is an unwillingness to do so.
Receptionists. The majority, 62.07%, of respondents considered that Receptionists treated them good or better. This leaves a large percentage that consider their treatment by receptionists to be below standard. Indeed just over 10% thought that their treatment by receptionists was very poor. This really needs to be addressed.
Telephones. Over 72% of respondents were unhappy with the use of telephones. This is an area that needs addressing. In addition, there seems to be a misunderstanding about the system for talking to a doctor for medical advice. Over 44% thought that the system was less than good. This may need further publicity.
Opening Hours. Over 79% of patients were happy with the opening hours offered by the Practice. Nevertheless, 48% would like weekend opening and 24% saw a need for the Practice to be open in the evening. There seems to be some misunderstanding about early morning opening and availability at lunchtime. The surgery does open early one morning a week and is open every lunch time. We have now formalised a late evening and an early morning opening and there will be a doctor available for appointments at lunchtime one day per week.
Access to GPs. The vast majority of patients who wished to see a GP of choice were able to see that GP within 5 working days, 34% of patients were within 3 days. A large percentage did not believe this to be acceptable. Only 20% of patients thought it to be acceptable. It may be that we need to stress the standard for seeing a GP of choice. When asked about access to any TGP, access figures improved significantly with 70% being able to see a GP within 2 working days. Almost 48% of respondents thought this to be unacceptable, this in spite of the fact that over 62% of patients are able to see a GP urgently, are seen on the same day. I find this last figure difficult to believe since no patient who urgently need to see a GP is ever turned away without access to a GP on the day.
Almost 45% of patients regularly saw “their own doctor” with only 16% saying that they almost never or never saw “their own doctor”; 31% thought that this was unacceptable.
When asked about how long they had to wait for their consultation to begin, 72% were seen within 20 minutes; 31% waited less than 10 minutes. 24% of patients thought that this was good or better but the remainder believed that this was below standard.
Consultations. The vast majority of patients thought that they were dealt with well or very well (even excellently) by both GPs and nurses. Large numbers believed that they were listened to with great care and were put at ease during the consultation. Most believed that there treatment was explained and that they were involved in decisions about their care. Both doctors and nurses were seen as being patient and caring and willing to spend necessary time with their patients.
- Introduction. The results of this survey have proved to be very interesting and have given the Practice some food for thought. Since the surgery is about to embark on an extension project, there is significant opportunity to affect change. Some changes have already been agreed but others now clearly require some discussion.
- Telephones. The extension has forced a move of the telephone equipment and enabled us to explore other options for telephony. In addition we have agreed that there is a need for additional lines and clearer management of any telephone system. The opportunity for this will be during Phase 2 of the extension build.
- Access to Doctors. Within the last 6 weeks an additional female GP has been employed as a long term locum for 3 sessions per week. This allows for having a female GP in the Practice every day. In addition, appointments are available in the early morning on 1 day per week. From March, there will be an evening surgery for patients convenience every Wednesday as well as consultations available on a Wednesday lunchtime. Currently there are no plans to open at weekends although this is under regular review.
- Although there have been no comments about the premises in this survey, serious consideration is being given to extending the downstairs to provide capacity to have all consulting rooms on the ground floor and to improve both access for those with disabilities and a more pleasant environment for all patients.