Patients: Gill Walt (Chair), Mimi Colahan (Vice Chair), Isky Gordon, Kathy Graham-Harrison, Judy Sands, Gordon Meehan, Mike Fried, Adam Leys, Millie Kieve, Philippa Fraser, Penrose Robertson

A new member, Millie Kiene, was welcomed to the PPG.

Practice: Natasha Smeaton, Phillip Posner, Loni Booker.


Penny Gamez


The previous minutes (also posted on the PPG page of the James Wigg website) were accepted as a true record of the previous meeting. Philippa Fraser asked that her apologies for the previous meeting be noted.


Kathy Graham-Harrison reported back on a number of issues discussed at CPPEG. These largely revolved around the new Universal Offer which is under discussion/consultation between the CCG and local practices. It involves local commissioning of services over and above current services offered by GP practices in Camden. A continuing and complex discussion process is taking place in the borough in relation to GP contracts and the financing of services.

Adam Leys, another PPG member raised a question about the extent of patient involvement in the development of Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs). This led to considerable discussion and concern among members of the PPG about the timing of the process, the lack of consultation and the inadequate exploration of the consequences of the introduction of STPs. These concerns have been mirrored in some of the press, among GPs in Camden and others. It was agreed that the Chair of the PPG with other members, draft a letter to NHS England, STP organisation and the CCG to express their concerns about the current status of STPs. Action: Gill, Kathy, Adam and others.


The awareness-raising campaign took place during flu month, but started a week late because of the visit by the CQC. It was agreed that the campaign will be repeated next year, and a number of lessons were noted: the banner (which arrived late), will be saved for next year. Staff on flu duty will be given more background information on advance care planning, and be reminded to hand out the postcards printed for patients. Posters will be displayed in the glass cabinets at the entrance to the Health Centre and on the TV screens as were this year. All involved in the campaign were thanked for their effort.


A number of PPG members met with most of the reception staff. PPG members found the meeting informative in a number of areas: that many reception staff are called doctors’ assistants in view of the diversity of their roles; that the variety of tasks reception staff undertake is much larger than supposed; that staff spend approximately 2 hours a day on face-to-face reception duty, with the rest of the time in answering calls, opening post, checking that tests get done, generating prescriptions, filing scans, dealing with faxes, sorting the doctors’ rooms, among many other tasks. They also are responsible for the triage of patients for the duty doctor’s list.

Discussion was also held regarding the views of reception staff and of patients, in order to better understand the pressures from both points of views. Overall both PPG members and reception staff felt the meeting was successful, and it is hoped to repeat such a meeting in 6 months’ time.


One of the issues that came up at the meeting with reception staff was the problem with queues. A number of solutions were discussed:

  1. Volunteers to help people waiting in line. They would redirect patients, or help with electronic check in. Requests for these volunteers will be made on the screens. They will be offered a short induction, and asked to work around 2 hours a week.
  2. People (eg volunteers) with tablets checking in waiting patients
  3. Having a number dispenser by the entrance.

It was agreed that a request for volunteers for 1) in the first instance be made on the screen in reception, and in January a short induction would be held for those who were interested. Action: Gill, Mimi, Loni.

A PPG member, Penrose Robertson, offered to do look at how problems of queuing were tackled in other institutions, and what the pros and cons would be of introducing a number system. Action: Penrose.


One of the results from the GP-Patient Survey (July 2016) suggested that only 76% of James Wigg patients felt that the GP they saw or spoke to was good at involving them in decisions about their care (against the national average of 82%).

It was decided that the PPG might help the Practice explore why this response rate is below the national average, by undertaking a small study in January or February. Two or three PPG members will undertake exit interviews with patients on one morning. ACTION; Gill, Mimi, Natasha, Loni


  1. Staff:

Two Physician Associates have just started with the Practice, and will come to the next PPG meeting to explain their roles. ACTION: Natasha

There has been some turnover in nursing staff, all of whom have been replaced; the IT person, Mike Williams is leaving, and a new person will be recruited; two new doctors’ assistants have started and an apprentice accountant recruited.

  1. CQC report:

The Practice has received a draft report, which was positive, but the final report will only be out in a few weeks, when it will be publicly available.

James Wigg has received a couple of awards, and been short-listed for one of the BMJ awards for their paediatric service.


– Camden Patient Participation (CPPEG) Forum meeting next Wednesday, 23rd November. The agenda and information about the meeting was handed out, and members encouraged to go. Notice of the meeting was also sent to the email list.

– Millie Kieve introduced her interest in issues around iatrogenic illness. It was agreed that she would send more information to Gill and Mimi, and that time would be found on the agenda for the next meeting so that she could raise the issue.

– The Cancer Group is having a party on 6th December at 3.30pm, to which PPG members are invited.


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