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Dr Phil Dommett on learning from each other’s calls

How do you improve your telephone consulting skills in the practice?

“We have always recorded phone calls and have involved partners in direct staff training and review, listening to each others’ calls. It was threatening at first and not comfortable, but it works… if we all know the right things to say.

One thing we taught them right from the start was to avoid the words “no” and “can’t”, and substitute with all the positives: “we can get a doctor to phone you this morning and discuss the type of appointment you need and how long it needs to be” sounds rather better than “we don’t do appointments any more”!

New patients still struggle with the concept, but our list size is growing faster than most practices in our area, and we still preserve days off and holidays.”

Phil Dommett, Trescobeas Surgery, Falmouth

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