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What goes on behind the scenes at St Wulfstan Surgery? Lost child in lift. Posted on 20 Sep 2019

We had an interesting comment not along ago on NHS choices which, although indicating they were very pleased with the service at St Wulfstan Surgery, suggested we were not very proactive.

It made us think about the things that are going on behind the scenes and perhaps you might be interested.  So, here is a brief summary.

We have our own active recall system for cervical smears (not relying solely on the national scheme), invite all new patients for a health check, the well over 40s (and under 75s) to a NHSHealthCheck, have an annual medical review of patients with severe mental health problems, an annual review of patients with learning disabilities, a monthly luncheon club for the elderly, a voluntary driver service (which we set up in anticipation of people having difficulty getting to the surgery when it moved out of the town centre), send invitations to diabetes training courses for new diabetics, provide information sheets for people newly diagnosed with pre-diabetes, chronic kidney disease, or are identified as having a raised risk of heart disease.

We actively invite new patients to come to see the doctor to discuss their medication and actively encourage people to register for online access so they can see all their clinical notes on line. We also have systems to invite people in for their regular diabetes, hypertension, lung disease, heart disease, and/or depression so that they are not missing out by forgetting to come back. We have back up systems so that they are chased up if they do not respond to their invitations, and back up systems to the back up systems!

One or two other things we do include active chasing of eligible people for shingles vaccination, daily reviews of medication courses and whether monitoring and blood tests are up to date (and if not we call people in), discuss all new cases of cancer with all doctors and the extended health team (of district nurses and MacMillan nurses) at our quarterly multi-disciplinary team meetings, run quarterly reviews of all our patients who may be at risk of medication dangers (as identified by the regular newsletter from the Medicines Health Regulation Authority (MHRA), discuss active recalls and changes in management of diseases at our quarterly clinical meetings (attended by doctors, nurses and health care assistants), and we discuss at the quarterly meeting with the health visitors any new and existing children on our list who may be having health, mental or social problems. We also have a quarterly newsletter that is sent out to 4,500 patients who have registered to receive it. This covers a range of national and local health issues, relating to groups of patients, research projects people may wish to be involved in, and also active health tips (as well as news about the practice).

There are discussions involving all the staff every quarter where things have not gone as well as they should (such as losing a child in the lift) and regular monitoring of availability of appointments and whether we have the right staffing mix and numbers.

I certainly never thought being a doctor was like this, but it adds to the enjoyment of the job and I am certain it adds to the quality of the service we provide.

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