Minutes of the Patients’ Participation Group Meeting held at 6.00 p.m. on Thursday, 7th September 2017, in the Meeting Room at The Cottons Medical Centre
Present: Julian Crowe (JC) Practice Manager, Michelle Garratt (MG) Deputy Practice Manager, Helen Boto (HB) Chair, John Fryatt (JF) Vice-Chair, Janet Harper (JH) Secretary, Chris Sidebottom (CS), Gwendoline Cooper (GC), Carolyn Wibberley (CW), Eileen Plowe (EP), Roger Martin (RM), Ruth Stokes (RS), Ann Robinson(AR), Lynn O’Shea (LOS), Danielle Shaw (DS)
- Apologies for Absence:
Mary-Anne Burch, Pat Harrison, Elizabeth Mitchell, Conrad Cooper
- Minutes of Last Meeting:
The Minutes of the previous meeting on 27th July 2017 were accepted as correct together with the amendment to Item 4 in ‘Report from PPG Chair’.
- Practice Manager’s Report:
There were two complaints recorded for the first two quarters of this year.
Unfortunately, DNAs had increased over the last month to 79. It had been noticed that a considerable number of these were with the Registrar and it could possibly be attributed to the fact that patients were reticent owing to the fact that they felt a Registrar was not a ‘proper’ doctor.
Friends and Family Test for the period 2nd September 2016 until 1st September 2017 showed 87% of patients recommended the Practice, 5% did not know and 8% would not recommend the Practice. These figures were based on 682 responses.
The number of patients now on The Cottons list was 9,419 which was an increase on 9,383 recorded at the last meeting in July. There had been an increase in Out of Area requests to join the Practice.
Mr. Tom Pursglove, MP, had been true to his word and arranged a meeting on 20th September at 12 noon between NHS England, Nene CCG and the owner of the site, who owing to commitments would attend the meeting on the telephone. JC felt that it would be advantageous if a member of the PPG could also attend. The Vice-Chair, JF, agreed to represent the PPG.
The 3Sixty Care Partnership, consisting of the 3Sixty Care GP Federation and the Northamptonshire Healthcare Federation Trust (NHFT), had appointed a new Director of Operations. JC had pointed out to this partnership that whilst cluster hubs worked for Practices in towns and cities, they were not practical in urban environments, such as Raunds, where Practices were spread out over a wide area. He thought that this had now been ‘taken on board’and second thoughts were being given to creating a hub at Nene Park. As many facilities as possible would be provide in Practice.
Manor Gym referrals were continuing. However, in an effort to save money, a slight curb on hospital referrals was to be put in place. This would mean that before a GP could refer a patient to a Consultant another GP at the Practice would have to approve the referral. This new control would be called Peer to Peer Referral and would obviously create extra work for GPs.
There had been an attempted break in at The Cottons and this was the reason that a notice to the effect that there were no controlled drugs kept on the premises overnight had been placed on the front entrance doors. A security light would also be installed above the side door.
Flu Clinics would take place on 23rd and 30th September, between 8.30 a.m. and 11.30 a.m. Adults could attend either clinic, but children who qualified for a flu injection would only be dealt with on 30th September. If these dates were not possible for patients then from 14th September they could book a flu injection on any Thursday morning, or could request an injection at a routine appointment with a doctor or nurse. It had been agreed with Lloyds Pharmacy that they would not advertise or promote the fact that they could give injections until the Flu Clinics had taken place. There were many posters on display advertising the Flu Clinics and texts would be sent out.
A few Skype appointments had taken place, but it had been decided that these could only be booked through a Receptionist and would not be available to be booked on-line.
JC circulated a poster issued by Nene CCG advertising the forthcoming Autumn Patient Conference on Tuesday, 10th October, 2017 at 12.30 p.m. until 5.00 p.m. at the Kettering Conference Centre. Any local person or group interested in healthcare and the development of local services was welcome.
Regarding Practice staff, certain changes were taking place:
Holly Cox had joined as Senior Administrative Assistant, Heather was retiring and Mary Pantling had resigned as Registration Clerk. Julie Bellingham was to take over from Mary and there would be two new Receptionists, Elaine Malthouse and Susan Greenwood.
HB drew attention to the fact that the Evening Telegraph had printed an article regarding the best and worst rated surgeries in East Northants. The best surgery was reported as Spinney Brook in Irthlingborough, but The Cottons did not fare so well, particularly in connection with helpful and cheerful Receptionists. In defence of staff it had to be remembered that they were extremely busy and sometimes patients were not as polite as perhaps they should be. The whole patient/receptionist conversation was, after all, a two-way exchange. There had been other critical comments on Spotted Raunds, but these had unfortunately been anonymous.
- Flu Clinics:
JF agreed to produce a poster advertising the two Flu Clinics and Raffles. These could be exhibited in the Library, Co-op, Post Office and Town Council Notice Board. Unfortunately, we had been too late to include a mention in the Raunds Roundup, but it was in the Hargrave Herald and also the Autumn Newsletter.
HB thanked JF for once again producing an interesting and informative Newsletter.
It was noted that at the first Flu Clinic on 23rd September there would be representation in connection with AAA (Abdominal, Aortic Aneurism) screening.
HB thanked RS for taking on the organisation of the Raffles at the Flu Clinics in her absence and also PPG members who had brought in raffle prizes. She reported that her approaches to Waitrose for a raffle prize had received no response and the manager of the new Asda in Raunds had informed her that they were too small a store to make a donation, both responses were disappointing.
As usual a list of local businesses who had contributed to the Raffle would be displayed at the Flu Clinics.
- Any Other Business:
HB asked if MG could give a short talk at the next meeting of the PPG in November in order to explain what training had been given to Receptionists who would in future be classed as Care Navigators. Their job would be quite a difficult and sensitive undertaking and it would be helpful if the PPG could understand more deeply how patients would be approached and dealt with. In the next Newsletter JF could also outline the aims of this new position.
HB reported that at the present time the balance on the PPG account was £103.73.
Problems regarding repeat prescriptions not being ready at the pharmacy, despite them having been submitted perhaps a week in advance, were noted.
EM, who was unable to be at the meeting, had asked that a problem should be raised regarding the length of time patients who only had mobile phones were required to wait when ringing the Practice. It was felt that the introductory message was too long and the further wait for a receptionist to reply was costing the mobile phone user an unacceptable amount of money. The meeting felt that there was no way it could be determined that a caller waiting to be connected was using a mobile phone and the introductory message could not be cut short as it contained necessary information. An alternative was for patients to use on-line booking, which cost nothing. JC pointed out that as soon as BT installed fibre optic the number of lines to the Surgery would double and this would speed up responses as back office staff would also answer calls. He added that he was in constant touch with BT trying to progress this installation.
- Date of Next Meeting:
The next meeting was set for Thursday 16th November, 2017, at 6.00 p.m. in the Meeting Room at The Cottons Medical Practice.
The Minutes of this meeting have been recorded for accuracy purposes only.