Meeting Notes & Minutes
15th November 2022
- 1pm – 2pm with Dr Paul Ch’En, Dr Helen Salisbury and Jon Frank (business manager)
- Barbara L.
Apologies were received from:
- Barbara P.
Elaine welcomed everyone to the meeting.
Dr Ch’en thanked the PPG – the practice came top (in Oxford) in the national GP survey.
The arrangements for the extended access scheme are now in place. They work across the 5 practices in the Primary Care Network (PCN). The services are:
Evening sessions, Monday - Friday 6.30pm – 8pm – each practice does one day per week. Observatory provides their session on Wednesday evenings.
The Saturday morning sessions are rotated around the 5 practices. At the moment these are taken up with the Covid vaccination clinics. Once the clinics stop there will be a more ‘normal’ range of services provided including GPs, nurses and a phlebotomy service.
Waiting times for routine appointments
Jon reported that they regularly monitor waiting times. At the moment it is about 8 or 9 days for routine appointments.
PPG members reported that they have not had problems getting appointments and feel that things are better than at some other practices.
Prospective Access to Health Records
NHS England wants all patients to be able to access any new GP records online. This was meant to come into operation last year but was delayed, originally until July 2022 and is now supposed to be in operation from 1st November 2022. The plan was to switch this on so that everyone has access immediately.
Dr Ch’en and Dr Salisbury explained that generally this has the potential to be of benefit to patients there are a number of issues of concern about how it is being rolled out.
It means that GPs will be the gatekeepers for all information on medical records. The key issues are safeguarding and capacity.
- Safeguarding: They will have to ensure that the data is ‘safe’ so that any mention of other people in reports is redacted. There could also be a potential loss of privacy for those who may be in coercive relationships.
- Capacity: the practice will have to review letters/reports from others (which can be very long) and may need to employ someone to undertake this task.
The practice will be attending a meeting which will let them know what the local advice is. In the meantime they are not going to switch the system on.
- Experience of other countries: It seems that in other countries eg. Netherlands it has worked well.
- What about children & teenagers: the system is turned off from 11-16 to ensure confidentially.
- Can the patient ask for topics not to be recorded on their record:
- This presents a difficult situation for GPs.
- There are still a lot of areas that have not been thought through.
- The big worry is that people will lose confidence in their GPs.
- Sexual health clinics have a completely closed system to maintain confidentiality.
- It is not always easy to know what information patients may regard as sensitive.
- There has been no public information campaign to explain the benefits or issues related to this.
- Are practices in Oxford taking the same approach: Each practice is taking their own decision.
A useful summary from the BMJ is attached at the end of these notes.
Traffic filters/Bus gate proposals & closure of Botley Road
There were no strong views expressed around the bus gate proposals. It was agreed to revisit this topic at our next meeting.
Botley Road Closure:
The closure of the Botley Road for most of 2023 to allow for the rebuilding of the bridge by the station was discussed. It was agreed that it was going to be particularly difficult for patients living in Botley and Cumnor. The practice had considered setting up a branch surgery, but staff capacity and premises issues mean that this would not be possible. The other practices in Botley are struggling and do not have the capacity to take on more patients. The practice expect that they may have to make more home visits than previously.
Elaine explained that she had recently been supporting a number of people (not all registered at Observatory Medical Practice) who did not have smart phones or use a computer. It felt as they had been left until last with communications.
For example, letters inviting people to make an appointment for Covid vaccinations were sent out after everyone else had received a text or email. This meant that when they went to make an appointment nothing was available. (It was noted that the Royal Mail late deliveries do not help!)
Elaine asked if it was possible to compile a list of people without IT access, and perhaps ensure they were contacted first.
The practice agreed that this is an issue for some patients.
- Doctors: The practice has a full complement of doctors at the moment.
- Nurses: Catrin Cavney has returned and is the Lead Practice Nurse.
Antonia Michalikova is being trained to take over as the Lead Practice Nurse.
Katrina Vos has returned and will be working with diabetic patients.
Susanne Mathews has returned and with working as a respiratory nurse.
- Clinical Pharmacist: Amara is shortly going on maternity leave.
The general theme is that people leave but like the practice so much they come back!
Any other business
There was no other business.
Date of next meeting to be agreed. Early 2023.
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