Norfolk GP in Norfolk working relationships project part 2

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Summary of report content

This report is the second part of Healthwatch Norfolk’s research into the working relationships between health and social care services.  The first part focussed on General Practice from the perspective of both professionals and patients. This part looks at other services experience of working with General Practice.  The research is based on one-to-one interviews with 31 members of staff across six NHS provider organisations in Norfolk.

Since this work involved a range of organisations, staff described a mixed picture of the working relationships between services which was shaped by each organisations’ viewpoint and priorities, leading to few key themes common to all services. One key theme established was the ongoing issue of ineffective communication between the IT systems used by health and social care services. Overall most services believed they had good working relationships with General Practice, but they were not as strong as they once were. Staff highlighted that communication with General Practice proved challenging, as a busy GP practice can be difficult to contact. Concerns about GP ‘out of hours’ services were also raised, due to a lack of patient information on who to contact outside of office hours.

Mental health services described the need to work more closely with General Practice, to reduce inappropriate referrals. The staff interviews indicated that all services are under increasing pressure, demands are high and patients’ expectations are rising. In general, staff perceived services could be improved by more joint working across the health and social care system.

There was one recommendation about the need to co-ordinate IT systems in Norfolk across health services.

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General details

Report title 
Norfolk GP in Norfolk working relationships project part 2
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Norfolk
Date of publication 
Wednesday, 19 July, 2017
Type of report 
Key themes 
Information providing
Integration of services
Service delivery organisation and staffing
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
Structured interview
How was the information collected? 
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Primary care services 
GP practice

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
All people 18 and over
Not known
Not known
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
Types of health and care professionals engaged 
All care professionals
Does the information include other people's views? 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 
Not known

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.