Healthwatch Brighton and Hove is undertaking a programme of visits to GP Practices across the city during 2015. In total we will visit 15 GP practices, including 3 pilot visits in March 2015.This report on our Links Road surgery is one of our pilot
Healthwatch chose the pilot visits based on a range of criteria:
- Those practices about which we had received calls via our helpline.
- Those not recently visited by the Care Quality Commission5 .
- A cross city representation of the 6 GP clusters6 in the city.
- Feedback from NHS choices
- Patient populations
- Soft intelligence from partners and community engagement
Results of Visit
Appointments and Referrals
- As with the majority of GP practices, at Links Road Surgery it is possible to book appointments with nurses and doctors over the phone, in person and via the internet.
- Of these options, patients who made an appointment in person (100%) and by telephone (100%,) all found the process easy or very easy.
- Only one person had used the online appointment booking service.
I usually get a same day appointment
Quality of service
- 84% of people we asked said that the reception staff were helpful or very helpful.
- Our representatives observed reception staff talking to patients in a warm tone, and appearing ready to be of assistance during the visit.
They always listen and give good feedback without feeling you are taking up too much of their time
- The representatives felt that both the waiting rooms were clean and tidy, with adequate seating.
- They observed some children’s play equipment, which was mainly in the downstairs waiting room.
- Magazines were available for the patients; however some of them were slightly out of date.
- Noticeboard were available at the practice, which representatives felt were all kept up to date.
- Good examples of health promotion could be seen, such as a poster by the practice nurses on looking after your heart, and a request to children for drawings of healthy food to make into a display.
- However, it was reported that the boards were a little cluttered although materials were easy to read.
- However, no information on where to seek urgent care was available. Links Road Surgery does not currently have a Patient Participation Group, or PPG.
Out of hours
- We asked patients where they would go if the practice was closed and they needed medical assistance.
- The detail in the chart below shows that whilst 36% would approach places like the Brighton Station Health Centre and their local pharmacy,
- 18% would go straight to A&E. A number of people said that appointment system was so good at Links Road that they had not faced that issue before.
Summing up and looking forward
- Links Road Surgery appears to have a very person-centred approach to its patients, which means that patients are generally very satisfied with the service they receive.
- We asked patients to rank the practice from 0-10 (with 0 being the very worst, and 10 being the very best).
- Of the 16 patients that took part in this, the average score was a very positive 9 out of 10.
- The lowest score we received was 6, and the highest 10.