Stade Street, Hythe, Kent, CT21 6BDTel: 01303 235300
Sadly our Patient Participation Group (PPG) - the Friends of Oaklands which has been running or the last 10 years is currently adjourned.
The committee officers who have been remarkable in their dedication to the practice decided to step down so that other patients who are interested may wish to form a new group or become more closely involved with the surgery.
It is important for the surgery to be able to connect to a patient group as this communication between the two is central within primary care.
If you would like to become involved - either to set up a group or to be part of a group, please contact Sarah Roseaman, Practice Manager for more information.
As you know we have a Patient Participation Group (PPG) at the surgery - which has been running for over eight years. This friendly group of patients are keen for others to join them. They hold regular coffee mornings on the first Monday of the month (may be arranged on a Tuesday if there is a Bank Holiday) upstairs in the surgery's meeting room from 10.00am - 11.30am. You are always assured of a warm welcome and a friendly face.
Unfortunately, we will no longer have any evening meetings with speakers. Sadly the attendance has dwindled away; therefore a decision to cancel was agreed.
Alternatively, if you are unable to meet up you can always join our virtual group via our website – please see the PPG heading on our website www.hythe-gp.co.uk.
The PPG is an important conduit for the surgery and the NHS as a whole. The practice can link into our patients, discuss ideas and any changes and implement them by working together. Likewise what is happening on the ground and suggestions from individuals can be fed back into larger patient groups such as the Shepway Patients Participation Group that in turn report to the South Kent Coast Clinical Commissioning Group (SKCCCG) – which means patients can influence the services commissioned locally in their area. Every one of us can be part of this as we are all patients registered somewhere, but it would be great if we could get more of our own Hythe patients involved.
So please come along to one of the coffee mornings if you are in the area. For further information about our PPG or to become more involved with the ‘Friends of Oakland’s’ please contact Brian on 01303 873882 or Sheila on 01303 269068.
The Government is introducing the Friends and Families Test (FFT) to all GP surgeries on the 1st December 2014 to gather feedback from patients about the services provided to them. This follows on from a successful pilot of the scheme in 2013 (of which Oaklands Health Centre was included).
The purpose of this Test is to ask people if they would recommend the services that they have used and offers a range of responses. The first question is mandatory. This data will be collected across the country and together with follow up questions will influence changes within the NHS and support patient choice. For further information please visit the attached link from NHS England.
We will be asking patients to feedback via the Friends and Families Test (FFT) either via our website www.hythe-gp.co.uk or by completing a questionnaire in-house. This will give our patients the opportunity to give anonymous feedback on the surgery.
The data received will be submitted to NHS England on a monthly basis and the results will be published through the NHS choices website and our own www.hythe-gp.co.uk.
This FFT will start from 1st December 2014 of the Friends and Families Test (FFT)
Brian Waterhouse, Chairman Bob Harding
Pauline Waterhouse, Treasurer/Social Secretary Thelma Harding
Sheila Gotham, Secretary Doris Kingsford
Members Health Centre Representative
Jane Mathers Dr Rob Immelman
Gillian Weller Sarah Roseaman
The Chairman welcomed all members and pointed out the emergency exits.
Received from Vivien Holborow, Jean and Tony Butter, Molly Birch and Jenny Millns.
As it was well over a year since the last meeting, Brian just summarised what was covered.
Brian said it was the first opportunity for the committee to record their appreciation for the excellent professionalism and dedication of the Health Centre Staff over what was a very difficult period.
We could not hold meetings and coffee mornings during this time but we did give our full support to the Flu Clinic by providing teas, coffees and biscuits all day and we spoke to many patients.
Our coffee mornings resumed on 2 February and the one in March was exceptionally well attended. The coffee morning in April will be held on Tuesday 7 April (Monday 6 is a Bank holiday) and the May one is cancelled because it falls on a Bank Holiday.
Our cake sales will resume at June’s coffee morning – Monday 1 June.
The next Group Meeting will be on Wednesday 20 May – our Annual General Meeting. We have discussed at length about not continuing with these talks because of poor attendance – over the last 8 years the average attendance has been 10 (most of which have been committee members). We don’t want to stop but this is embarrassing when we have speakers who have been working and then travel a distance to come. We have decided to give it another try this year and will then re-assess the situation.
We need some new committee members who are willing to undertake two important roles: Programme Secretary and PRO (Publicity Officer).
The Health Centre was recently inspected by the Care Quality Commission. The results are awaited. Three members of the PPG (Chairman, Treasurer and Secretary) were interviewed. This PPG has been operating now for 8 years - we showed him all our programmes since 2007 and he asked for copies. He thought we were doing too much by offering evening public talks every other month and said that it might be better to organise 2 per year on a specialist subject which would last perhaps half a day. We explained that this would not be possible because of the difficulty with accommodation and the fact that surgery staff would not be able to attend during the day. He suggested we hire alternative accommodation but we told him that this might be expensive and we don’t have the funds to do so. He was very interested in what we were doing and thanked us for our time.
PPG information is in the Hythe Handbook, and also on the websites of ‘Hythe Guide’ and Street Life (a local social networking site). The Health Centre website has links to the PPG and information is given out in packs for new patients. All our events are also on the PPG noticeboard in the entrance to the surgery.
We now have a more professional Suggestion Box across from our noticeboard. However, some patients still continue to put prescription requests in our box. (We regularly pass these to the surgery). Also the two umbrella stands we bought are still used for waste paper.
Treasurer/Social Secretary – Pauline Waterhouse
Petty Cash: £27.83 Cash in bank: £918.83 Total: £946.66
Pauline said coffee mornings continue to be successful, particularly the last one. At the Flu Clinic we received £103.27 in donations; expenses were £31.82, so we made a profit of £71.45. We are in a healthy financial position and have asked the surgery if there is anything they would like us to buy.
Brian said our programme secretary, Jean Butter, has resigned due to ill health. He thanked her for all her hard work over the years. Jean had already planned last year’s programme which had to be cancelled due to the flood. She has passed all the contacts to Brian who will try to organise the talks for this year.
Sarah thanked everyone for sticking with the surgery during a long, hard year - on the back of 2013 when we lost our senior partner Alison Wiltshire to cancer – she was a big part of the surgery and a sell-respected GP. This was a very sad time for the surgery, as many of our staff were touched by similar experiences that year. On the staffing front, we said goodbye to Dr Rosalind Powell who took up a partnership in a surgery in Lyminge and to Chris Whatmough, our Nurse Practitioner, who specialised in chronic disease, who moved to be nearer her family.
Work finally started on the refurbishment in July and continued to just before Christmas. However, there are still a few things still outstanding. This is alongside our roof concerns which relate back to when we took over the building and, although it was addressed under snagging issues, the full extent of the problem was not known. Now we are in dispute with the developers and the contractors who undertook the work – it is a real shame with such a lovely building.
We are pleased to report that all the admin staff have been recruited now, we are just in the process of employing another HCA to join the nursing team and we are currently advertising for a partner.
In June 2014 we welcomed Dr Aravinth Balachandran as a partner. He worked here previously as a locum while he was based in a practice in Maidstone, so he knew the surgery. But we are very pleased that he has joined our practice. He works full-time - 8 sessions a week.
We seem to have the super flu Saturday off pat now – but a lot of the feel-good factor is down to the PPG who provide the PR and refreshments to the patients during the long day that we are open. I think the patients see it more of a social event than an inconvenience.
Changes to appointment system - In January 2015 we changed our appointment system and did away with triage. This decision was based on the number of appointments we could offer our patients if a GP and a NP were not tied up on the phones and the number of DNAs. We are now just two months in and, although the system will need to be tweaked, it works well – which means more appointments are available and more appointments being used.
Sarah then handed over to Dr Immelman for some more news ….
Dr Immelman announced that, although not leaving the practice, he is stepping down as a partner after 16 years. He would now work 3 days (6 sessions) as a salaried GP instead of 4 days and will be working elsewhere to pursue his interest in neurology.
He felt that as a partner he was ‘management fatigued’ and wanted to take some time out. GPs are facing massive changes and lots of difficulties to maintain better services with ever-decreasing resources. In Shepway there is a problem to find highly-skilled doctors and nurses. His day-to-day work at the surgery would not change and he was looking forward to being able to focus on patient care because this is what he wanted to do.
IT access for patients
He said that surgeries had been asked by government to improve IT access for patients and went on to explain what had been done.
repeat prescriptions and request them electronically.
Over the coming months patients will be able to have greater access to their medical records. The government are keen that GP surgeries extend this access allowing the patients to view some aspects of their medical records and patient history including referrals letters and results. These will be able to be viewed online. Access will be via the clinical system EMIS which is the one used for online appointments.
Over the last couple of years there have been a number of concerns raised nationally about sharing health data with outside agencies and others. This initially started with Summary Care Records (SCR). The Department of Health launched a blanket opt-in for all registered patients (however, patients do have the choice to opt out). The SCR allows basic data to be accessed remotely by secondary care (hospitals and A&E) – and includes the identity of the patient, details of any allergies, medication and current problems. This can only be accessed with the consent of the patient. Should the patient be unable to consent, the GP can access this information if there is a medical reason to access this information. There is a full audit trail that policies these access arrangements.
Alongside there was another General Practice Extraction Service (GPES) which takes anonymous patient data which is used to audit the services available and uses this information to help shape and improve future patient services.
The Care Data sits alongside this and concerns were raised that the data extracted for this could be sold on by the government to other non-medical companies.
If patients prefer to opt out of this data sharing, they need to inform the surgery so that a code may be added to their medical records.
At the moment the first steps of Medical Interoperability Gateway (MIG) are being introduced. This is to allow better communication between the surgeries and the hospital. The initial part allows the hospital to access on a read only basis the information held on a patient’s medical record at the surgery. This will allow secondary care a more holistic approach. It is early days yet but eventually we at the surgery will be able to access the information held at the hospital as well. Full details about MIG will be displayed at the surgery soon and patient leaflets will be available. Full details will also be made available on our website and Facebook page.
As with the other electronic access options, the whole system has a strict access criteria which is heavily policed. Again, if patients do not wish to be part of this, they will have to inform the surgery so they can be opted out.
There are going to be many changes within the NHS – most of which we haven’t heard about yet. But the whole way that primary care works will be working towards a more integrated service for patients.
Doris Kingsford asked Brian if the speaker from the Alzheimer’s Society at our last public talk in November 2013 was the same as the contact Jean had passed to him for future talks. Brian said he would check.
Mr Brian Wash, NHS South Kent Coast Clinical Commissioning Group’s lay member for public and patient involvement gave an interesting and informative talk on the work of the CCG. He introduced Rochelle Saunders, chairman of Shepway PPG, who told us about the work of this group.
For more information, telephone 03000 424 700;
or visit their website www.southkentcoastccg.nhs.uk
Date of next coffee morning
Tuesday 7 April 2015
Date of next group meeting
Wednesday 20 May 2015
Annual General Meeting/Speaker to be arranged
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