Our response to the Healthwatch survey on GP access

NHS Kernow’s Director of Primary Care, Andrew Abbott said: “Healthwatch Cornwall is a valued partner in our work to transform health and care services in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, and we are really grateful for the research they have undertaken to support us and the patient insight it offers us. 

“GPs in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly are working really hard to make sure their patients get the support and care they need, when they need it, including providing early morning, evening, weekends and telephone appointments to meet local demand. 

“Our GPs and practice staff have a lot to be proud of. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has rated every one of our 62 GP surgeries and the GP out of hours service as providing either good or outstanding care. This is an incredible achievement and recognises the first-rate service provided by our dedicated workforce.   

“The results of the national GP survey also show that 90 percent of people in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly who contributed said they had a good experience of using their GP surgery, compared with 85 percent nationally. Our surgeries ranked higher than the national average on all areas people were asked to comment on. 

“We know there are still areas where we can improve to ensure people have the same level of care, wherever they live. Healthwatch Cornwall’s survey findings will support the work we are doing with GPs, nurses, community leaders and patient groups, including Healthwatch Cornwall, to  understand patient experience, and use this to help develop what services are needed and where, and to reduce the variation inexperience outlined in this report. 

“When their GP surgery is closed, anyone who needs urgent help can also call our clinically-led NHS 111 and GP out of hours service. People can also visit the Camborne-Redruth primary care centre, which is open from 8am to 10pm, seven days a week, or any of our minor injury units when they need treatment or advice. Pharmacists also provide an invaluable service for anyone with a minor ailment, such as conjunctivitis, water infections (such as cystitis), nappy rash, or other minor skin conditions. You can get details of all the services, opening times and contact details here

“We will now review Healthwatch Cornwall’s findings with our GPs and make sure they are considered in our plans to integrate health and care services.”

The full report can be read here.