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Highcroft Surgery News: September 2016
This feels like a permanent feature in our newsletter at the moment. We know how important it is to be able to get through to us and we want to keep you up to date with improvements.
We now have our upgraded phone system in place. For most people, most of the time, it’s working well. It has various options, tells you what position you are in the queue and keeps you updated. We can now see in real time how many people are in the queue and how long they’ve been waiting.
We’ve taken on an additional apprentice to help in reception and we’re looking at how we can further increase the number of staff answering the phones when it’s busiest. If you call up later in the day and we don’t have any same day appointments left, we’re now offering an appointment on the list for the following day. This saves making two phone calls to get an appointment and reduces the number of people calling us first thing in the morning.
Unfortunately we know that some of you aren’t getting the options when you ring up. This seems to happen when calling from landlines on certain providers. If this happens, there are three ways around this:
- Call from a mobile – it doesn’t generally seem to be a problem from mobiles
- Call our back up number – 0115 883 2338 – this goes straight into reception. It doesn’t have any queuing so you may just get an engaged tone but someone is always sat at that phone
- Call 01623 784394 – it’s not a local number but it will take you straight to our options menu
We are hoping to get this problem resolved soon but it’s not proving as quick or simple as we’d hoped. We’re going to stick with the current setup though as it is working much better overall and we should have it working for everyone in the next month or so.
How can you help us to help you?
- Think about other services you could use. Local Pharmacies can see and treat a wide range of conditions such as coughs and colds, headaches and conjunctivitis. Health visitors can provide lots of help and advice for children under the age of 5.
- Refer yourself – there are a number of services you can refer yourself for without seeing a GP or ANP first. These include counselling, help losing weight or quitting smoking, or seeing a midwife. We’ve created a self-referral section on our website (www.highcroftsurgery.co.uk) or ask a receptionist.
- Tell us if you no longer need your appointment – to make this easier, there’s an option on our phone to leave a message to cancel an appointment.
- Order your medication in plenty of time – most of you are really good at doing this but unfortunately a few people consistently order their medication late which creates extra work when we try to rush it through.
In other news…
Three (sort of) new doctors have now joined us – Dr Nia Williams (who completed her GP training here in August), Dr Kate Jack (who trained here in 2005) and Dr Andy Brodie (completely new) who is a third year registrar and with us for the next year.
Flu season is now upon us. More than 4,600 of you are entitled to the flu jab for free – all 2-4 year olds, all over 65s, all carers and anyone else who’s at risk from complications with flu – those with certain long term conditions or pregnant. We’re providing appointments at a range of times – mornings, some later appointments (4-7pm) and on Saturday 1 October. If you think you meet the criteria, please give us a call to check your eligibility and book your jab.
Reception is now open from 8am each day.
(Site updated 28/09/2016)