Dr Hilary Neve and Managing Partner Liz Brimacombe scoop the prestigious HSJ Innovation award. Judges said that this was a “simple and elegant” solution to a widely experienced problem and the surgery was given the award on behalf of all GP Access members.
“So doctors, we’d like you to improve patient access and the patient experience, enhance the quality of care and patient safety, make your service greener and, while you are at it, reduce the pressure on urgent care services…”
‘Tweaking our system wasn’t the answer − we know, we tried it. So we went for a radical overhaul’
Very laudable goals, but as a small Plymouth general practice, based in an area of significant deprivation and already struggling with resource constraints, the rising demand for consultations (up from 3.9 per patient a year in 1995 to 5.5 in 2008) and increasing levels of chronic and complex health problems, we could perhaps be forgiven for throwing up our hands in horror at the Department of Health’s multiple policy directives.
Yet our solution to patient access has helped us manage our demand, enabled us to address all the policies above and won us a 2012 HSJ Award to boot.