Monday, December 15, 2014

Changes to the way we look after you

Over the past few years we have been subject to a number of  retirements and changes to our GP team.  We know this has significant impact, not only on the practice team, but also on our patients.  We are particularly aware of those of you who have had to re register a number of times with new doctors. 

We have been discussing ways to make sure we continue to provide a safe service to you and better manage changes to our doctor team so that patients are less affected.  We would like to take this opportunity to describe a new way of working which will be implemented from 1st February 2015.

Our practice is committed to patient centred care, to provide a high quality medical service and make sure every patient has a named GP who oversees their care.  We also have a duty of care to ensure that an individual doctor’s workload is sustainable.

From February 2015 all GPs will:
· consult with patients (face to face, telephone and visits). 
· make referrals to and action letters back from other healthcare providers including hospitals.   
· request, follow up and action results for tests and investigations
· follow up and manage on going conditions

In addition GP Partners, that is Drs Chris Dilley, Simon Kerr, Kate Gurney, Matt King, Nigel de Sousa and Emma Stuart will:
· divide 16,000+ patients between them on a ratio dependent on the number of sessions they work
· oversee the care of patients on their list and delegate on-going care and consultations to non partner GPs
· also be responsible for medication reviews, carrying out quality and safety audits including prescribing and quality and outcomes framework. 
· carry out non clinical work and other management functions

What does this mean for you?
In the past we have asked you to  see your own GP.  From February 2015 you will be asked who is dealing with your problem.  If it is a new problem you will be asked to see your registered doctor or one of the other GPs.

This model allows for:
· an increase/decrease in GPs and GP Partners. 
· a direct line of care management to be followed even if a GP partner does not do the consultation.

 · continuity of care and improved access through delegation to non partner GPs.
· time to manage paperwork for an increased list size and clinical responsibility.
· the national difficulty in recruiting GPs as well as changes in general practice culture

In addition our clinical team will continue to provide care as follows:

Nurse Practitioners
Philly Evans and Chris Hellier work  autonomously to see, treat and prescribe medicines for patients with acute minor illnesses and conditions.    

Practice Nurses
We have six qualified and experienced practice nurses who will work closely with patients to manage long term and chronic disease.  They also provide a wide range of additional nursing services including vaccines and immunisations, travel, contraception, stop smoking and treatment room services. 

Healthcare Assistants HCA)
HCAs work under the guidance of the Practice Nurses to provide blood tests, INR, health checks, dressings, ECGs, swabs, inhaler techniques, spirometer and blood pressure testing (for patients who are not suitable for self monitoring).

Local Pharmacists
Confidential (and in a private consulting room if available/requested) expert advice and often treatment for minor ailments including coughs, colds, high temperature, blocked nose, sore throat, aches, pains and headaches, hay fever and allergies, insect bites and stings, indigestion and diarrhoea, constipation and haemorrhoids, heartburn, contact dermatitis and minor skin infections, warts and verrucas, athlete’s foot, mouth ulcers, cold sores, conjunctivitis, earache, thrust, cystitis, nappy rash, head lice and threadworms.  Pharmacists also advise on wellbeing and prescription queries and concerns including a review of your current medications.

News about our doctors…….
We are very pleased to announce that Dr Sally Caswell and Dr Sarah Fletcher have joined our team on a permanent basis. We look forward to working with them both.

We recently said goodbye to Dr Tom Owens, who has taken up a partnership position in a mid–Devon practice.  We will also say goodbye at the end of January to Dr Michelle Bailey.  She will leave us to be closer to home in an Exeter practice.  In the meantime we are maintaining our service with a dedicated and experienced group of locum doctors.

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