Healthwatch Rochdale share local people's views on GP appointments with the NHS

Healthwatch Rochdale has shared local people's views on accessing GP appointments with the lead local NHS organisation, Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale Clinical Commissioning Group (HMR CCG).
GP waiting room graphic

53 local people spoke with Healthwatch Rochdale over a three-month period and were asked questions regarding accessing GP appointments and how they thought the process could be improved.

Healthwatch Rochdale reported their findings at HMR CCG Primary Care Performance and Quality Sub-Committee in November as a way to enable the patient's voice to be heard by those responsible for monitoring the quality and performance of local GP services.

The findings showed that over 74% of people spoken with made their appointment over the telephone, 24% in person and 2% online. Of those that used the telephone 57% phoned between 1-5 times, 19% between 6-10 times and 24% more than ten times.

Patients who had been triaged as not needing a GP appointment were signposted to services which included the eye clinic, pharmacy, urgent care centre, 7-day access to a GP and other community-based services.

Suggestions by patients to make getting a GP appointment easier were:

  • to have open / drop in surgeries
  • ability to book an appointment in advance
  • more reception staff to answer the phone
  • more availability of online appointments
The CCG values the survey that has been co-ordinated by Healthwatch Rochdale and we will be looking closely at the findings and considering how this may affect change in local practices
— Sarah Crossley, Head of Primary Care for NHS Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale Clinical Commissioning Group

Healthwatch Rochdale would like to hear your experience of making an appointment with your GP and how you think this could be made easier. Share your thoughts with us today by telephoning 01706 249575.


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