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Holywell Medical Group Announces Appointment Booking Improvement Plans

  • Date: 12/09/2014
  • Category: General

Holywell Medical Group (HMG) has announced the timeframe for introducing a new and improved telephone system which will make it easier for patients to book appointments at its five surgeries in the Chesterfield and Staveley areas.

Following consultation directly with patients and through HMG’s Patient Participation Group (PPG), a new telephone system has been commissioned which will be fully installed by the end of this November.

The new system will enable patients to call their local surgery directly. More lines will be available, manned by a team of trained staff. Callers will be told their position in the queue.  And details of how many calls have been made and are waiting will be displayed in each surgery waiting area.

Holywell Medical Group Project Manager Pat Colclough explained that difficulties in getting through on the telephone had previously been cited as the biggest issue by patients at the group’s surgeries at Rectory Road, Inkersall, Barrow Hill, Grange Family Health Centre and Holywell House.

She said: “We have listened to the feedback from patients and the PPG about the service they want from the telephone booking system. The majority of people said that they wanted a direct line into their local preferred surgery and an indication of their place in the queue to get through.

“At peak times, the volume of calls is extremely high. We take around 1,000 calls requesting appointments in any one day and many more from patients who now book online at our website

“We have therefore spent a great deal of time investigating the telephone system options open to us and we are confident that, with this in place, patient access to health services in this area will be greatly improved.

“Staff training will be an integral part of the new system and all calls will be recorded so that we can closely monitor and evaluate the service standards and quickly resolve any issues that are highlighted.”

Holywell Medical Group Senior Partner Dr Nadine Kale concluded: “We appreciate that some patients have faced difficulties in getting an appointment at the surgery of their choice and with the GP or Practice Nurse that they have requested.

“The new telephone system will greatly alleviate these issues and we are confident that patients will see improvements in a very short space of time.

“We are committed to working with patients to involve them in our further development plans and I would encourage more people to get involved or to contact the Patient Participation Group with their ideas and concerns.”

Tony Parkes, a member of the practice’s Patient Participation Group (PPG) said that a recent PPG questionnaire of patients had highlighted that improvements had already been made in the appointment booking process including the better use of online booking.

“The installation of the new telephone system should make the situation even better and we look forward to continuing to work with Holywell Medical Group as the voice of the patients to ensure that further improvements are made in the access to health services in this area.”

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