Reports & Surveys

Primary Care GP Access Engagement 2017

Nottingham North & East Clinical Commissioning Group (NNECCG) carried out a large survey across the north and east of Nottinghamshire to capture the views of the population about access to GP surgeries from 8am - 8pm (extended hours), weekend access and access via technology eg online.  506 people took part in the survey and the key findings were:

  • 91% of those responding said there is a need for weekend GP services
  • 96% said there is a need for extended weekday hours.
  • Feedback indicated patients were prepared to be flexible to have access to these services
  • With regard to technology, feedback suggests many people are fearful of being ‘left behind’ as access to services seemingly becomes more virtual.
  • Feedback re Skype/facetime, online consultations and symptom checker shows a split between those keen to embrace these and those who are not. There were a number of comments highlighting safety issues around this area of development.

Our PPG Chair says:

We are fortunate at Torkard to have had some extended hours provision in place for several years. Most practices start at 8.30 with a finishing time of 6.00 or 6.30. Our early sessions, which have appointments from 7am are very well received by patients; I certainly found them invaluable when I was working.

The aims of extended hours are to provide an accessible service for all patients especially those who cannot get to appointments during normal working hours because of their own work or other commitments. Secondly to reduce unnecessary attendance at A&E. Weekend GP availability does not exist at present; with the exception of flu clinics or one off events surgeries are not open at weekends.

When asked most people said they would be happy to see a GP at another practice at weekends which would support GPs to work together across an area to provide this service. The Clinical Cabinet committee of the CCG are looking at the implications for extended hours following the survey feedback. A task and finish group will take the development further and produce a specification to present to stakeholders. It has been recommended that patient involvement and consultation is maintained throughout the development process and where that is not possible that they are kept informed of proposals.

I am a member of the Clinical Cabinet and sit on a number of other CCG committees as a patient representative. If you would like more information about this or other developments please contact me at: or leave a note at the surgery reception with your contact details.