Summary of report content
Healthwatch Gloucestershire conducted a survey, focus groups and interviews with 618 people about their experiences of accessing GPs during November and December 2020.
The report found that people appreciate having a variety of ways to contact and book appointments with their GP and other Practice staff. People like having different ways to have a consultation with their GP, such as telephone or video calls, as well as face-to-face. The different ways of engaging with their GP are not always obvious to the public. eConsult is too complicated, too long and does not flow. People find it frustrating and off-putting. The option to send a message to the GP Practice is much better received. People like a telephone holding system to tell them where they are in the queue. People value being listened to and treated as an individual, and they do not always feel they are. People do not like having to repeat their story to different GPs. Not knowing when to expect a call back causes inconvenience and frustration. Prescription ordering systems have improved since the start of the pandemic and are now more streamlined. People feel that GP Practice staff do not give them enough time nor their full attention. A significant minority of people felt that staff do not communicate effectively with someone living with dementia. GP Practice websites mostly hold all relevant information, but they are not always user friendly, easy to navigate, nor completely accessible.
A number of recommendations were made to address these issues and the report was shared with the CCG who responded positively to the report.