Present: Jonny Bucknell, Veronica Britton, Isky Gordon; Kathy Graham-Harrison; Patricia Langton; Jane Mays; Adriana Santos-Davila; Gill Scott; Manor Wong, Gill Walt (Chair); From the Practice: Drs Sarah Worboys; Stephen Yaxley, Jonathan Levy
Apologies: Nori Graham, Mimi Colahan, Jill Fraser, Maria Constantinidou, Pal Bhambra
- Introduction to Pal Bhambra.
Dr Warboys gave an overview of Pal’s role as a new non-clinical partner who is responsible for operations at JW & QC. He has wide experience in the management of health care. His role overlaps with many functions of the practice. He will take over many GPs activities including filling in of obligatory templates demanded by NHS England. PPG members will be invited to submit question to Pal before the next meeting so that he will be able to respond to the questions before or at the meeting.
- Appointments System
Dr Worboys described the complexity of the appointments system and how it has changed over time, especially since the pandemic. A new system was introduced at JW (not yet at QC) earlier in the year. She outlined the process of getting an appointment, which is based on a doctor-led triage system.
Patients who want an appointment contact the practice by telephone, e-consult and in person. Reception staff follow a template to get basic information from patients, including how they wish to be contacted (text, email, video or face to face). The template is then passed on to the triage team and divided into acute needs that will be dealt with that day, or routine needs, which are non-urgent. In the case of routine appointments, patients will be offered their own doctor or another depending on availability and preference. Patients have the choice of a telephone or face to face appointment. A survey in October suggested that only 14% of patients who had a non-urgent appointment wanted to meet face to face.
E-consult: To control the workload JW has e-consult on only during busy hours during the week (usually high peak phone times i.e. 08.00 – 10.30). However, patients with long term conditions have access to e-consult at any time, 7/24.
- Phone Wait Times.
This is not only too long but also no indication is you are 2nd or 23rd in the queue. Hopefully Pal will address this issue.
- Questionnaire on the Appointments System:
This was initiated about a month ago, and about 100 responses have been collected. The aim is to get at least 300, so the volunteers are being asked to continue to encourage patients to fill in the questionnaire. It can also be filled in on-line by visiting here.
These come in as either verbal (on phone, in person) or in writing. If in writing then patients should be sent a holding letter and a formal follow up. In the last quarter 49 complaints were received, all have been sorted bar 9 in process. The complaints fell into 3 categories, appointments, prescriptions and communication. There was a request that in future each group of complaints be presented with numbers of the complaints as well as the number of patients seen over that period.
- Volunteer Feedback.
A number of PPG members help out in the reception area on Mondays and Tuesdays, and their feedback has been helpful in looking at practices within reception, as well as appreciated by patients coming to KTHC. There will be a fuller report at the next meeting. There was also discussion about signage at the KTHC, both outside the building and inside, and considerable agreement that it is poor and could be improved. This will be taken to the Buildings Manager by one of the patients who has had a long career in graphic art and has some interesting suggestions and ideas. The chair to introduce Gill Scott to Lorna Johnson to see what can be done to improve signage.
- Feedback from JW/QC practice:
- Telephone wait time has decreased over the last month. Average wait now is 9 minutes. More information will be presented at the next PPG meeting
- Free Space – Funds have been found to employ a part time gardener who will work with the PPG garden volunteers, and her presence is already apparent. Free Space is hoping to use the garden as a place for workshops and other activities that impact on health.
- A regular meeting of Bengali female patients is being held in the KTHC and it was suggested that a member of the PPG might talk to them to try to increase the diversity of the PPG. Gill to follow up. It was also noted that it might be helpful to talk to the Bengali Centre in Hampstead Road.
- Feedback from CPPEG on Camden Partnership Board and Neighborhoods will be covered at next meeting.
It was noted that the policy on mask wearing in KTHC is unclear. There are messages on the entrances asking people to wear a mask, but currently staff are not wearing masks, and volunteers are not handing out masks. It was suggested that a consistent policy on face masks would be helpful, especially as winter approaches.