Healthwatch Swindon, the independent organisation that gives the residents of the town a voice in their health and social care services, is embarking on a project to take a close look at the 26 local GP surgeries across Swindon and Shrivenham.
Pete Rowe is Manager of Healthwatch Swindon and said that the views of local people are vital. “It’s really important for us to hear first hand the experiences of what it’s really like going to the doctors. We know that most people have positive things to say about their surgery but we are doing this work because we have received feedback regarding:
- the access and delay in getting non emergency appointments;
- other processes like getting through on the telephone or making online appointments;
- GP practices closing lists to new patients and concerns about the current capacity of surgeries within Swindon; and
- how patients and carers are communicated with by practice staff both clinicians and reception staff.
Healthwatch Swindon will also be working with Patient Participation Groups at surgeries where they exist; and offering support to surgeries to establish them if they don’t exist, using the framework developed in partnership with NHS England, which was launched in July of this year.
The project will also look at other aspects of surgeries – things like the information available to patients; access to interpreters where needed; and awareness of alternatives to surgeries. This programme of work is about patients’ experience and not clinical performance.
To let Healthwatch Swindon know your views about your GP surgery or to find out more about Patient Participation Groups, Healthwatch Swindon will be in The Brunel Centre (Plaza side, between Sainsbury’s and Marks & Spencer) on Saturday 21st November from 10am to 4pm.
There is also a short online survey for people to complete about their GP surgery, which can be accessed at http://tinyurl.com/pqbgmmv. Alternatively, you can contact Healthwatch Swindon at Swindon Advice and Support Centre, Sanford House, Sanford Street, SN1 1QH
- in writing,
- in person,
- on the phone to 01793 497777
- by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
or via the Healthwatch website http://www.healthwatchswindon.org.uk/content/speak-out
More information about Healthwatch Swindon can be found at www.healthwatchswindon.org.uk