A South Lincolnshire GP practice has won an award in the national General Practice Awards 2018 for its collaboration with patients and other providers.
Having been named as a finalist for the prestigious award, Abbeyview Surgery in Crowland received The Collaboration with Patients and Other Providers Award at a ceremony in London at the end of November.
“To say we were thrilled to win the award would be an understatement,” explains Dr Abhijit Banerjee, GP Partner, Abbeyview Surgery. “We had an amazing night at the awards ceremony and the award itself recognises our journey towards innovative and better patient care, putting the community in the heart of general practice again.”
Finalists in this category were required to show examples of the introduction of new models of collaborative working and how these have helped improve the way patient care is delivered – either by enhancing existing services or bringing in new ones.
“Looking back a few years the practice was struggling to keep up with demand and ensure patient satisfaction,” says Dr Banerjee. “We knew we needed to change and so we restructured our management and established a patient participation group to help increase communication with patients and improve their perception of the practice.”
A particular criticism from patients at the time was lack of access to care. The practice introduced a telephone call back service that allows GPs to speak to three time the number of patients, which has proven to be particularly useful in assisting patients with routine enquiries. A significant number of these patients would have previously needed to made an appointment and come into the practice.
“We have also introduced other innovations designed to improve access for patients including recruiting nurse practitioners to provide extra appointments, and launching minor illness walk-in sessions and ad-hoc Saturday clinics. As a result we now have an average of ten spare appointments across the team every day which allows for more proactive interventions with patients and working with other agencies.
“I felt great pride and shared joy with our team and also with our patient participation group,” adds Dr Banerjee. “This is a prize for all of us in our patch and beyond who are working hard with limited resources but crucially with an eagerness and vision to go beyond and think out of the box.”
“We are delighted for the whole team at Abbeyview,” comments John Turner, Chief Officer, South Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group. “Dr Banerjee and his colleagues are a real credit to primary care. They constantly look for ways to innovate for the benefit of their patients and I am so very pleased that their exceptional approach has been recognised with this award, which is just one example of the fantastic work that GP practices and their teams do on behalf of patients across the whole of South Lincolnshire. ”