Natasha Smeaton (NS), Charlotte Rose (CR), Jill Fraser (JF), Patricia Langton (PL)


PL wanted to discuss the percentage of GP slots that are telephone appointments:

  • Urgent/ On The Day are telephone appointments that are triaged by the Duty Doctor.
  • There are extended access appointments which are held in four locations: Somers Town, Brondesbury Medical Centre, Caversham Group Practice and Swiss Cottage Surgery. These appointments are offered if the next available appointment is too far ahead or not urgent/acute for a DD call back. Patients are also able to contact the Hub directly.
  • Routine appointments are for ongoing, non-urgent matters; this would be the practices next available appointment.
  • Reception will signpost to other places, including the pharmacy/ physiotherapy (self-referral) where appropriate.
  • Children between 1yr-2yrs old have specialised slots to be booked in to.
  • Telephone Duty Doctor appointments are triaged by the doctor and the doctor will make a clinical decision after discussing the matter with the patient, this could be that the doctor prescribes medication, books the patient in to an emergency appointment, on the day or next day or can offer a Hub appointment.

There is difficulty balancing demand and continuity. Patients are being booked with their usual doctor or with someone they have seen previously. Patients are able to request to change their registered by putting their request in writing, it will then be the doctors decision to approve this request. The usual doctors are divided between the number of sessions they work.

There has been a recent decrease in registered patients; this is mostly due to the student population moving out the area.

Queens Crescent Practice is a training practice, so some of the trainee doctor will take on some of the doctors list.


NS discussed that as a practice we cannot have a preferred pharmacy. The practice doesn’t recommend pharmacies, it is patient choice.

Prescriptions can be requested via Patient Access.

As of 1st August, the practice will be going paperless for prescriptions. This means that the prescriptions will be sent via EPS, directly to the patient’s nominated pharmacy.


NS discussed there is a national shortage. The practice is affected as the practice is facing significant budget cuts.

Primary Care Network (PCN): Between the two practices there are approximately 28,000 patients. Staff are employed across the network, as practices fall in to their own PCN.

In the near future, more appointments may be offered with clinical pharmacist, paramedic or practice nurse.


In terms of prescriptions, the pharmacy or patient requests what is needed. This request is added to the system and sent to the doctor. The patient’s records are reviewed and if safe to prescribe, will be issued. Notes/messages are also sent with the prescription to the nominated pharmacy if patients are outstanding blood tests/medication reviews.

We also have a text messaging system in place which has so far been effective and also the doctors to send messages to book appointments/reminders to the patient.


Currently we are awaiting approval from CCG. The idea will be to merge the two systems together to form one system which we offer more services across the practices. Queens Crescent Practice will still remain as it is and have its own identity.

Next Meeting: Monday 7th October 9.30am

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