South Reading Surgery has yet to make required improvements to telephone and appointment access for patients, according to follow-up checks carried out by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).
The CQC is the national body that inspects NHS GP practices to see if they are safe and operating properly. In March 2018, inspectors checked whether the surgery had responded to a previous inspection report in September 2017, which found that patients found it hard to get through to the surgery and get appointments when they needed them.
In a report published on 19 April 2018, the CQC said the surgery had separated its phone line from its partner surgery in Shinfield but there were still issues that needed to be sort with the phone company. South Reading Surgery had identified a 93-hour shortfall of reception and administration staff, and it also needed to recruit a GP and a nurse practitioner. The surgery plans to survey patients this summer to see if the extra staff and phone changes lead to better satisfaction scores. The CQC said ‘it was too early to evaluate whether the actions were sustainable’ and the surgery’s rating for being ‘responsive’ to patient needs, would remain as ‘requires improvement’
However, the surgery has improved its ‘well led’ rating, from ‘requires improvement’, to ‘good’, after reviewing its governance arrangements and ‘reinvigorating’ its patient participation group (PPG). The PPG would now meet every three months over the next year to ensure managers could collect feedback and discuss any changes that were needed to the day-to-day running of the surgery.