Patient and Involvement Group Meeting Minutes

Wednesday 12 July 2023, 12pm (Online)

BBPCN Attendees:  

  • Sue O’Donnell - Business Manager, BBPCN
  • Tina Pascoe - Practice Manager, Brocklebank
  • Sophoan Britton - Operations Manager, BBPCN
  • Julie Walmsley - PA/Managing Partner, BBPCN

Patient Attendees:

As per Teams recording (x101)

The meeting was chaired by Sue and minuted by Julie with chatroom input from Tina & Sophoan. 


Intros & online meeting etiquette

Our last Patient Group meeting was a PCN wide meeting, with patients from Brocklebank Practice, St Paul’s Cottage Surgery and The Haider Practice taking part.


eConsult (Electronic Consultation)

  1. Replaces DoctorLink 
  2. More interactive than DoctorLink with ongoing continuity
  3. eConsults arrive in shared inbox and automatically sorted into criteria 
  4. eConsult drops into medical record – same confidentiality
  5. In use already, going over to total eConsult system from Monday 17 July
  6. Dealt with by eConsult team in eHub 
  7. Access via practice website 
  8. Explanatory video: What is eConsult, and how does it work?

General Practice Issues & Solutions

  • Not enough GPs and nurses to provide every patient with an appointment
    • Ongoing recruitment
    • Have appointed x4 of our Salaried GPs into Partners (Dr Hall, Dr Jamil, Dr Mazumdar & Dr Paramesparan) 
    • Some requests can be more appropriately dealt with by another clinician
    • May not necessarily mean/need seeing Same Day but will be appropriate triaged
    • New practice roles employed:
      • Clinical  Pharmacists – can prescribe 
      • First Contact Physiotherapist – deal with long term mechanical pain and musculoskeletal issues 
      • Social Prescriber – social issues / aligned to lots of services 
    • Reception and eHub staff will direct requests to appropriate clinician
    • Means they may request more information – stringent confidentiality training and rules in place, renewed annually 
  • Blood and investigation test result requests cause long waits on the telephone 
    • You will be contacted by text or telephone if your result is abnormal
    • You won’t generally be contacted if it is normal – but use online access (NHS app) to view your results
    • If you still want to speak to a GP about your results, please call in the afternoon
    • New phone system in place – can process more incoming calls but still capped 

The NHS App

  • We would encourage everyone to download and use the NHS App – same content as other general practice apps (Patient Access & MyGP) but has more with more coming
  • NHS App form available on practice website or hardcopy available at reception 
  • Once you have access to your medical records: 
    • If you find an error, please let your practice know so they can explain/sort
    • You are responsible for your own usage confidentiality – treat your information as strictly as we treat it in our practices

Questions & Answers

  • Q: What if I want to see a specific GP?
    • A: Use the eConsult free text box explaining who and why 
  • Q: Is the NHS App different to the MyGP app?
    • A: You can access both but NHS app being heavily invested in, with more content coming online 
  • Q: Used eConsult but didn’t hear back from anyone
    • A: Sorry. Action Sue:  Will investigate.
  • Q:  Privacy: not always available at reception desk / is online hackable?
    • A: eConsult has same levels of security as your medical record – heavily secured with infringements a sack-able offence.  eConsult will provide more privacy – patient inputs in their chosen environment and eConsult is dealt with in a private room staffed by admin and clinical staff
  • Q:  Positive experience / some suggestions:  make the explanation on the website as simple as possible and accessible for non-English speakers
    • A:  Absolutely.
  • Q:  How can I see my GP and arrange an interpreter?  Always told to call back the next day.
    • A:Patients will no longer be routinely told to call back the next day.  Explain in eConsult which doctor you want to see and why.  Make sure you request an interpreter at the same time.  
  • Q: Can’t access app via cross-systems (i.e. iPad and PC)?
    • A:  NHS access available on multiple personal devices; may need to come into the practice to see why you can’t.
  • Q:  Some eConsult questions are too strict and unnecessary suggest they are removed – we know if we need to go to A&E.
    • A:  Not everyone has that confidence or knowledge; we need to safeguard all our patients
  • Q: Does eConsult include Mental Health?
    • A:  Yes 
  • Q:  Actively opted out of technology through choice (civil liberties) – can you assure me the system is secure and not being scraped for data?
    • A:  Practice will support anyone without technological access, whether through choice or circumstances.  We are not using the technology discriminately and it is completely confidential.
  • Q:  How are patient deaths handled?  My father died unexpectedly in December [mum still a patient 30+ years].  Practice didn’t reach out.  Meant late bereavement referral and now on long waiting list. 
    • A:  Sorry for your loss.  In-practice protocol is new patient cancer diagnoses and deaths are discussed and reviewed at weekly GP meeting. 

Action Sue:  Will investigate and review waiting list for bereavement counselling via our Social Prescriber. 


Sue thanked everyone for attending, listening and contributing. 

Intention to meet again later in the year.  

If you have any feedback or follow-up questions, please contact the practice FAO Sue O’Donnell: 

Minutes will be made available on the website. 

Meeting closed 1:15pm.