‘Friends of Pirbright Surgery’
Patient Survey - March 2014
The Initial Analysis:
The questionnaire for the Survey was designed by the ‘Friends’ and distributed through the Surgery and local shops; it was promoted in the Pirbright Parish newsletter (‘Perinews’) and through the Brookwood community website. With almost 200 completed questionnaires returned, the results are deemed to be statistically significant when viewed against the total number of patients registered with the Practice.
The majority of respondents declared their age, with around half of them being over 70 years of age. Almost 60 per cent of those completing the questionnaire are female. There is a wealth of information contained in the answers to the other 13 questions that were posed and the following observations are drawn from the initial analysis of the questionnaires.
The figures confirm that most people find it easy to make an appointment at a convenient time with the doctor or nurse of their choice. There are concerns about the ‘111’ service. Comments from those who have used it suggest that the service is sometimes unhelpful and is clearly not working as well as intended. A surprisingly large minority of respondents are unsure how to address urgent medical problems at night and at weekends. Anecdotal evidence suggests that those who claim to know how to get help at these times do not always follow the recommended procedure.
Patients were asked if they would like more information about their illness and/or medication before leaving the Surgery and almost 90 per cent of the respondents say it is not needed. There is evidently still some scope to improve the level of communication between patients, GP’s and hospitals for both ‘in’ and ‘out’ patients. Even though a majority state that they are always satisfied, almost one quarter of those responding are not satisfied on all occasions. Although the North West Surrey Clinical Commissioning Group is centred about Ashford and St. Peter’s hospitals, patients of Pirbright Surgery express a clear preference for attending the Royal Surrey County Hospital with almost one third of respondents selecting Frimley Park Hospital as their preferred option.
Two thirds of respondents claim computer literacy, which may well be relevant if ‘Skype’ consultations with the GP’s are available at some stage in the future. Indeed, almost 40 per cent of those completing the questionnaire consider ‘Skype’ consultations to be ‘a useful option’. A similar percentage ‘have no interest’, whilst the remainder consider the prospect ‘a bit daunting’. The issue of the cost of medication was raised in the questionnaire and although the majority of those responding are happy to abide with the choice of medication prescribed by their doctor, almost one quarter are concerned that cost implications may prevent them from receiving the most appropriate and effective medication.
Further analysis of the Survey results continues, but areas requiring action and further attention are already being identified and pursued. These points are summarised below:
· Whilst access to the Surgery remains very good, the ‘Friends’ will continue to monitor the situation by inviting patient comments and undertaking further annual surveys. The ‘Friends’ will use their best endeavours to support the Surgery in maintaining its present high standards.
· The ‘111’ service is not working as well as intended and the ‘Friends’ and GP’s will bring this to the attention of the CCG, to stimulate and encourage improvements.
· The ‘Friends’ will do their best to explain and promote the help available to those experiencing urgent medical problems at weekends, Bank holidays and at night.
· Communication issues between patients, doctors and hospitals will be considered and discussed to identify areas where improvements can be achieved.
· The ‘Friends’ and GP’s will liaise with the CCG to ensure that they understand patient views on hospital choice and, thereafter, do their best to ensure that the current freedom of choice is maintained.
· The significant number of people expressing an interest in ‘Skype’ consultations is noted and, although not currently available at the Surgery, the subject will continue to be closely monitored on a national basis.
· The issue of medication costs is clearly a cause for concern. It is a complex issue with no simple solution, but the ‘Friends’ will continue to keep the subject under review alongside the CCG.
All patients registered at Pirbright Surgery are encouraged to share their complaints, concerns and compliments with the ‘Friends of Pirbright Surgery’ who, in the first instance, may be contacted via the Surgery. Your confidence will be respected at all times.