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Dr Panesar's update on winter pressures, zero tolerance and unreasonable behaviours.
~ a month ago
20 December 2022

Dr Panesar's update on winter pressures, zero tolerance and unreasonable behaviours.

Dear Patients, 

 As we move closer to the heart of winter, we are all working hard here at the practice to ensure we address the challenges caused by Strep A and Covid as well as looking after our patients with longer term health conditions.

 

We understand the challenges patients have experienced with access and this is a common theme across the NHS both locally and nationally. 

 

We have benefited from some amazing support by our PPG and our patients, thank you.  

With that said over the past 3 weeks our reception staff have faced significant hostile conversations which we understand are based on worries patients are feeling but these do fit with zero tolerance events and aggression or intimidation in some cases. 

 

One of our Advanced Clinical Practitioners visited a patient at home and was confronted by an aggressive and hostile family member facing language such as “you’re going to get it” delivered in a threatening and aggressive manner. I can’t let staff be at risk when carrying out their jobs. Our ACP advised she may have to leave without seeing the patient if she is threatened in this way. Thankfully things deescalated and the patient could be treated. 

 

The reason to highlight this now is that our staff must be able to practice safely and have the conditions to do their job the best they can. We understand patients may be frustrated and anxious or worried about loved ones, but we once again ask for your help to ensure that your engagements with the practice team are as you would do with your friends and family. This helps us help you. 

 

A significant amount of the challenges with accessing primary care are caused by things that are out of our control. This includes the lack of support to GP practices over many years, the recent negative press which means staff are leaving and recruitment is harder and the effect of austerity on resources. These are issues for the wider system and our elected representatives and not solvable by me or my front-line staff. For example, we have been recruiting for another GP for over 2-3 years without success. All this impacts on workload for those of us that are left and the reduced capacity we have to provide to patients. 

 

If you feel passionately that NHS primary care services need to be resourced and better supported to meet your access requirements and needs, then could I ask that you write to your Member of Parliament and elected representatives who are in a place to make the decisions needed to support the NHS and your practice. This way your feedback may reach those that can make a difference.  

 

We are always and will always be here for you as your medical team. I would be grateful for your support in treating our staff professionally so we avoid losing them and can preserve the services we provide despite the wider issues that remain out of our control. 

 

May I take this opportunity to wish you and your families a very happy Christmas and new year. 

Yours Sincerely, 

 Dr Panesar and Team Ivy.