Symons Medical Centre
GP Survey 2017 Review and Action Plan
Data was collected from January to March 2017 and a total of 248 surveys were sent out by NHS England. 108 surveys were returned indicating a completion rate of 44%. The data was compared to local / CCG results and the results are highlighted below.
Areas Where the Practice Exceeded CCG Performance
90% find the receptionists at this surgery helpful compared to 84% in the CCG
62% usually get to see or speak to their preferred GP compared to 54% in the CCG
76% usually wait 15 minutes or less after their appointment time to be seen compared to 68% in the CCG
66% feel they don`t normally have to wait too long to be seen compared to 61% in the CCG
91% say the last GP they saw or spoke to was good at listening to them compared to 89% in the CCG
89% say the last GP they saw or spoke to was good at explaining tests and treatments compared to 86% in the CCG
90% say the last GP they saw or spoke to was good at treating them with care and concern compared to 86% in the CCG
92% say the last nurse they saw or spoke to was good at giving them enough time compared to 91% in the CCG
96% say the last nurse they saw or spoke to was good at listening to them compared to 91% in the CCG
92% say the last nurse they saw or spoke to was good at explaining tests and treatments compared to 90% in the CCG
87% say the last nurse they saw or spoke to was good at involving them in decisions about their care compared to 84% in the CCG
96% say the last nurse they saw or spoke to was good at treating them with care and concern compared to 91% in the CCG
98% had confidence and trust in the last nurse they saw or spoke to compared to 97% in the CCG
Areas Where the Practice Equalled CCG Performance
81% say the last GP they saw or spoke to was good at involving them in decisions about their care which equalled performance in the CCG
96% had confidence and trust in the last GP they saw or spoke to which equalled performance in the CCG
Areas Where the Practice Trailed CCG Performance
50% find it easy to get through to this surgery by phone compared to 71% in the CCG
79% were able to get an appointment to see or speak to someone the last time they tried compared to 86% in the CCG
75% say the last appointment they got was convenient compared to 83% in the CCG
67% describe their experience of making an appointment as good compared to 73% in the CCG
83% say the last GP they saw or spoke to was good at giving them enough time compared to 85% in the CCG
82% describe their overall experience of this surgery as good compared to 83% in the CCG
The Partners and Practice Management team met together to review the results.
In terms of positives, it was noted that this Practice was exceeding or meeting local CCG performance in most of the indicators. There was particularly pleasing performance in terms of both the GP and Nursing domains and it was reassuring to know that, in general, patients trusted the clinical staff and were happy with the content of the consultations themselves. Patients appeared to feel included in their own care and felt cared for and listened to over and above the average for the CCG. It was also useful to know that patients did not appear to wait over 15 mins for their appointments and that patients (more so than the average for the CCG) did not feel that they normally had to wait too long to be seen.
In terms of negatives the practice fell below CCG average on six measures.
The patients’ overall experience of the surgery being good was 82% compared to 83% in the CCG. Whilst this was indeed slightly less, this was not felt to be a significant cause for concern in itself as this was approximately in line with the CCG average. Equally, the practice fell short of the average in terms of patients that felt that the last GP they saw or spoke to was good at giving them enough time. Again, this was not felt to be a major cause of concern given that it was comparable to the local average and only fell short by a couple of percent.
Of the four (of six) remaining indicators, it was noted that all of these were in the “Making An Appointment” domain. Specifically, the practice result for ease of getting through to the surgery by phone was significantly lower (by 21%) compared to the CCG average. This was by far the biggest deviation from the comparative indicators in either direction. Linked with this indicator, the survey suggested that there was some difficulty in getting to see or speak to someone and perhaps unsurprisingly (given the previous results) fewer patients felt that there experience of making an appointment was good (compared with the CCG average) and fewer patients felt that this appointment was convenient.
The deviation in the telephone access score was startling and disappointing, and it was felt by all that this would be having an impact in terms of affecting the other indicators in the same domain – i.e. if it was very difficult to get through on the phone patients would obviously be less likely to rate the experience of making an appointment as ‘good’.
The practice uses multiple lines answered by multiple staff members, although notably there is no advanced functionality such as a queuing system. Whilst, like every other practice, the phones are very busy in the morning and afternoon when “on the day” appointments are released, this was obviously a problem that needed to be investigated.
The practice team strongly felt that this result needed to be analysed further. Whilst the GP survey provided some important baseline figures it did not provide any qualitative information regarding the specifics of the problems that patients were encountering and did not provide qualitative information regarding the patient experience.
It was decided that the practice would seek more detailed responses about the problems being encountered by patients. It was decided that the best way to undertake this would be to deploy a specific survey about the telephone issues and that the practice could then consider appropriate action with a view to improving the situation. This would not only allow us the address and explore any source of discontent, but would also allow us to shape any changes that were required based on how actual users of the system wanted it to operate.
For example, did patient want a queuing systems or would this irritate further due to increased call costs etc? Were more lines required? Were more operators required? It was important to understand the exact issues that were experienced so that they could be discussed. Some members of the team did correctly point out that some potential changes might have associated hardware costs or staff resourcing implications and that like all practices there were potential resource constraints. It was also noted that, due to some significant upcoming IT changes, that the timing of the survey would possibly be delayed somewhat. However, given the magnitude of the deviation from the CCG average in this indicator, it was unanimously agreed that the survey must proceed and that this would be deployed once we had overcome the IT changeover.
Correspondingly, it was agreed that a survey would be conducted after September and that the results would be discussed with the surgery management team and the PPG.