South Gloucestershire GP survey: survey report

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch South Gloucestershire found waiting times were consistently being highlighted as a concern, even when the appointment booking system and/or GP surgery was considered efficient. The majority of respondents said they expected to wait anywhere from one to six weeks for an appointment, with three weeks appearing the norm. Healthwatch South Gloucestershire found that the vast majority of respondents made appointments by telephone, and where available, some also said they used online booking systems. However, online booking systems were said to sometimes be limited. For example, many respondents were only able to gain access to appointments with GPs, not the full range of surgery staff. Moreover, respondents were not clear on what was considered as being ‘urgent’, which appeared to be compounded by the variety of approaches to triage/assessment and the variation in waiting times being experienced across the district. Although 25% of respondents reported that seeing a named GP was the most important factor for them, the majority of respondents reported that being seen the same day was key. Healthwatch South Gloucestershire heard a handful of respondents note that long waits for GP services had led them to use Minor Injuries or A&E instead. Experiences varied enormously in relation to perceived flexibility of GP services to meet customer demands. A number of respondents reported finding their GP surgery being flexible to their needs, however this was often due to the respondent’s ability to be flexible also. Where respondents reported inflexibility from their GP services, Healthwatch South Gloucestershire found that the impact for those people with work or family commitments was evident, with a desire for evening and weekend appointments being frequently requested.

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General details

Report title 
South Gloucestershire GP survey: survey report
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch South Gloucestershire
Date of publication 
Monday, 18 February, 2019
Date evidence capture began 
Monday, 18 February, 2019
Date evidence capture finished 
Monday, 18 February, 2019
Type of report 
Patient experience
Key themes 
Booking appointments
Car parking access
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
Primary research method used 
How was the information collected? 

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 
Does the information include public's views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
What type of impact was determined? 
Network related impact

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.