PPG Minutes 3rd June 2024, 7pm





  • Jean Poole ( Chair and secretary)
  • Dr Vicky Smith
  • Ellie Bakhda
  • Rob Munden
  • Tess Munden
  • Ann Tunstall
  • Mike Woodward
  • Maureen Woodward
  • Trudy Gwatkin
  • Lee Davitt
  • Barbara Bird
  • Kerry Harding
  • Sharon Shaw
  • Rebecca Corbett-Pitman
  • Lee Atkins
  • Dr Elizabeth Tait.      

Welcome: Jean thanked those attending and in particular Dr Tait who was joining the meeting to lead on Care Navigation presentation 

Apologies: Mike Garett, Cindy Garret, Dave Powell


Approval of Previous Minutes

The minutes of 25th March were approved by the group.


Matters arising from previous minutes

  • New telephony system – Further information was given about the call back system. Should a patient not answer when called back, then their telephone number is given automatic queue priority when they ring in subsequently.   
  • The arrangement for a duty doctor to be close to the main reception  was settling down well and is proving helpful to the team.  
  • Healthwatch – the attendance of a guest speaker has been postponed due to the change of meeting dates – to be followed up at a later date 
  • Advanced care planning information session – the potential date of Tuesday 30th July seemed suitable giving time for sign up and publicity planning. – Jean to contact AgeUK to invite attendance and re-establish links to other PPGs in the area for support.
  • Ellie and Dr Smith to ensure a supply of REspect leaflets are readily available.   

NOTE :- since the meeting , a decision has been made to defer the presentation until September – new date tbc

•    Covid clinics – these were held on 24th April and 2nd May and went well with over 400 patients seen at each of the 3 sessions, with a low DNA rate. 


PPG issues

  • PPG policy update - this was being updated. It was agreed that an individual and formal confidentiality statement was not required for the group as discussions at the meeting were well managed and overall confidentiality understood. - Jean to distribute the policy to members of the group when finalised
  • Anna to arrange for copy to be added to PPG section of website
  • Parking for staff and patients - this may become difficult once the charges are introduced for the town car park alongside the surgery. Particular concern was raised about arrangements for blue badge holders.  Ellie investigating solutions to “manage” the surgery car parking area 
  • Text messages - the use of text messaging regarding appointments and action required by patients was discussed, with specific examples given. It was acknowledged that text messaging was very useful but can be confusing if one telephone number relates to multiple family members. The group was advised that the message details cannot quote the individual patient name. – feedback would be welcome as the use of messaging expands  

Courtside Issues

Care Navigation presentation

Dr Tait explained the new process that would be implemented from Thursday 13th June, with a slide presentation. The new process was being introduced after a detailed project had been undertaken over a number of months to develop a system that would make access to services “fairer” and “better prioritised”. The main change would be how patients request a consultation or service , which would now be via econsult only for many cases. Face to face callers and telephone requests would also require an econsult form. Regular reviews, certain clinical contacts and specific health monitoring would be dealt with differently. The use of text messaging will be expanding. 

Excerpt from slide presentation

The key reasons for change are :

All at Courtside 

  • Change is needed for the organisation
  • Mirrors changes made by all other surgeries in the area
  • Focus on need rather than demand
  • One route for patients requests to make the system more efficient
  • Get back control of workload

For patients 

  • Right clinician, right time
  • GPs and care navigators use information in eConsult to allocate appointments based on clinical need
  • Equal access regardless of pathway (phone, walk-ins or online)
  • Fair distribution of appointments
  • Continuity of care
  • Frees up phone lines for vulnerable patients

For clinicians 

  • Sustainability, control workload-fairer distribution of work, improve team working

For non- clinical staff 

  • Avoid staff burnout-improve team working
  • Streamline workload to make our processes more efficient

A number of questions were raised about the new process and it was acknowledged that it will take some time for patients to get use to the changes. 

The group were supportive of the changes and pleased to have had the chance to understand the process in some detail - feedback would be welcome after implementation and PPG members would be welcome to “walk about” to assist patients when the new arrangements are launched.

Publicity was planned for the coming days and a letter has been produced to hand out at reception.



Date of Next Meeting

Monday 15th July 2024 – 7pm  (to focus on feedback on the new process)  |  Ad hoc meeting – to be arranged for chair, vice-chair and surgery management team to organise  “Advance care planning” presentation