The results of the latest GP Patient Survey show that almost 79% of those surveyed in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly are satisfied with appointments offered by their GP practice, placing us top in England.
The survey asked a series of questions about local access to general practice. While some scores saw a slight dip on last year, 76.4% of patients rated the overall experience of their GP practice as ‘very good’ or ‘fairly good’, compared to 71% nationally.
Cornwall also ranked in the top 5 for overall experience of making an appointment, satisfaction with general practice appointment times, how good was the healthcare professional at giving enough time, and helpfulness of receptionists.
Dr Andy Sant, GP and Primary Care Partner for NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Integrated Care Board (ICB) said: “The ICB is thrilled to recognise the excellent results of the latest GP Patient Survey. The high quality of these scores is a reflection of the hard work being done across GP practices in the south west.
“At a time of increased demand into general practice, to see this sign that the majority of patients accessing care from their GP practice are satisfied with the care they receive is a real testament to the daily hard work of practice teams.
“However, we know that people’s experiences of GP surgeries differ across Cornwall, and that is why improving access to primary care services is a core priority for the NHS, both locally and nationally”.
What is the GP Patient Survey?
The GP Patient Survey (GPPS) is an England-wide survey, providing data about patients’ experiences of GP practices.
The survey is carried out by Ipsos on behalf of NHS England and covers a range of topics, including local GP services.
In Cornwall, the survey was sent out to almost 16,700 patients, which is around 3% of the population. Just under 7,000 completed the survey and shared their experiences, which is a 42% response rate.
Which areas can we improve on?
‘Ease of getting through to someone at a GP practice on the phone’ saw the biggest dip, scoring just under 55%. That is down by almost 5% on last year.
Results for ‘ease of using a practice’s website to look for information’ and ‘satisfaction with appointment times’ are also lower than in 2022.
The Integrated Care Board has responsibility for Primary Care services and works with local Primary Care Networks, and GP surgeries to improve these areas, as part of the NHS delivery plan for recovering access to primary care.
Praise for individual GP practices
Narrowcliff Surgery in Newquay achieved the highest score in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly for ‘overall experience of GP practice’, with 98% of patients surveyed rating that as ‘very good’ or ‘fairly good’. Brannel Surgery in St Austell scored 97.9%
The other top 10 performing practices were: St Mary’s Health Centre, Isles of Scilly; Quay Lane Surgery, Saltash; Neetside Surgery, Bude; Sunnyside Surgery, Penzance; Lostwithiel Surgery; Three Spires Medical Practice, Truro; Marazion Surgery; Carnon Downs Surgery).
Dr Charles Stephens, Senior Partner at Narrowcliff Surgery, said: “We are very pleased to have received such a positive outcome from the recent GP Patient Survey, and we would like to thank our patients for their feedback on their experiences at the practice.
“Our staff work very hard to provide this level of service, and we are very aware that this has been achieved despite a number of local and national pressures”.
You can read the full results of the 2023 GP Patient Survey on the dedicated website.
Keeping having your say
The NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Integrated Care Board is committed to improving future services, including general practice.
Our vision is to make Cornwall and the islands a great place to be born, live and grow old and to help us deliver this, we have been engaging with our communities in many different ways to shape our Integrated Care System’s draft 10-year strategy.
The findings of our Community Conversation chats and new online survey will be used to shape the final version of our strategy, which will set out how partners from across the system will work together to plan, deliver and improve local health and care services.
Have your say through our online survey on the Let’s Talk Cornwall website, hosted by Cornwall Council.