Faced with the same issues, Clarendon Surgery in Salford decided something had to improve, as access was now impacting on the service their patients received. Clarendon Surgery could be called a ‘typical’ GP practice; it has 9,000 patients, three partner and four salaried GPs, three nurse practitioners and is a teaching and training practice.
“The staff couldn’t cope with the volume of calls, the patients couldn’t get through and sometimes the phone system would crash from the sheer number of calls we had coming through in such a short space of time. Our surgeries were fully booked, if you hadn’t made an appointment by 8.30am all the slots were filled, the waiting room was packed, we were making telephone calls, and patients still couldn’t get an appointment.
“From a staff perspective, we had a high non-attendance rate for appointments, it was a miserable environment for reception staff, we GPs were stressed and for everyone just ‘working harder’ wasn’t having any effect. We had to do something different.”
Dr Jeremy Tankel