Chobham&west End Med Prac, 16 Windsor Road, Chobham, Woking, Surrey, GU24 8NA
Also known as: The Surgery, 16 Windsor Road, Chobham, WOKING, GU24 8NA, Lucas Green surgery, Lucas Green Road, West End, WOKING, GU24 9LU
Been on the surgery books for just over 4 years but lucky enough to be blessed with good health. However my 1st appointment did not go well. On arrival at the surgery I went to the reception window and introduced myself. The receptionist just pointed to a machine on the wall. It was obviously too difficult to take a moment to explain the process. I then waited over 45 minutes past my appointment time. No explanation and no apology. I am a working professional and wouldn’t treat my staff or customers the same way. Let’s hope my health holds out as I don’t want to have to go back.
I have found it very difficult at times to get an appointment booked for when the doctor or nurse wishes to see m e as the booking system at the surgery is not made up to when the appointment needs to be booked so I have had to contact on a weekly basis only to be told all the appointments for the date required have been taken. This means that when I do see the doctor or nurse quite a period of time has passed between the date I wished to book and could actually book. The other issue is I live in West End and keep having to go to Chobham to see the nurse. If I have had to book an urgent appointment I have always been seen the same day which is great. Most of the time I have had to go to Chobham for this which I can understand when the appointment is not planned. I had a certain gp allocated to me for many years and I was happy with this as the gp knew me and my medical history and I felt happy with this. Also the gp is mainly based in West End surgery. My allocated gp has changed, even though my original gp is still at the practice. my reallocated gp is mainly based in Chobham. I was very disappointed not to be consulted before this happened and cannot understand the logic behind the change. To date I have never seen my reallocated gp as when I have requested an appointment she was fully booked. I had to take an appointment with another go and I was not particularly pleased as the appointment was in Chobham, not an urgent one and I wanted to discuss my medication but the gp I saw not particularly helpful. I have not had any problems with all the other gps and nurses. They are all very helpful.
The receptionist watched me struggle up the stairs into the surgery with my push chair and said nothing. I then later found out from the nurse that their was another entrance/exit with a ramp! This was my first time to the surgery and when I entered I told the receptionist my name and who I was here to see, the response was "have you checked in", I didn't understand what she meant, she followed up by pointing to a machine on the wall, I had no idea what this was. It might have been nice for her to explain the process of the self checkin since this was my first time here. I was waiting for a call from the nurse which was due on a Monday, I didn't receive the call until Wednesday but no one contact me to explain. So my first two experiences with this surgery have been pretty poor. A total lack of customer service was evident.
I apologise to this patient for the obvious lack of customer service displayed by the receptionist. With regard to the receptionist not helping with the pushchair, the access from reception to the front door is not direct and therefore I'm sure had she gone to help, she would have arrived too late. There is also a large sign to the right of the main door which directs patients to the ramp access at the rear of the premises, but this in no way excuses the poor customer service displayed. I am unable to investigate the reasons for the delay in receipt of the telephone call from the Nurse, without further information, but apologise for any inconvenience caused. Hopefully the patient's next encounter with the practice will be a more enjoyable experience. David Clippingdale Practice Manager
When I get to see my GP I am always delighted with the care taken, pleased with the result of treatment offered, and generally satisfied. However it is often impossible to get an appointment with the system of ringing at 8 am in the morning because you sit listening to a recorded message/music for up to 35 minutes only to be told that no appointments remained available that day, at either Chobham or West End surgery. You may be asked if the matter is urgent and do not wish to exaggerate your condition so reply that it is not, so no appointment suggestion is made. It must be possible to have more telephone lines available to take calls, and engage staff briefly to deal with the 8 am rush, or arrange to book appointments ahead - which is no longer the case - to prevent patient frustration and potentially dangerous situations when patients are not seen when they need medical advice. It should not be necessary to go to Woking Community hospital for help when there is a local village medical practice.
Unfortunately appointments are a finite resource and the number available is dependent upon the number of GPs we have working at the practice. Our allocated budget (£85 per patient per year) will only stretch so far when employing GPs and you may be aware, as reported in the national press, there is a current shortage of GPs in the UK. So even if we had the funds we probably could not recruit! Of the appointments we do have, approximately 2/3rds are offered up for booking 6 weeks in advance, on average these are fully booked up to 2 weeks hence. Of the remaining 1/3rd approximately half are held back until the day of the appointment for medical problems that manifest themselves at short notice, these are booked on a first come first served basis from 8 a.m. and when these have gone, the remaining 1/6th are then only available for medically urgent problems that will not wait until the next day. Having more staff answering more phone lines at 8 a.m. would only work if we had more appointments to offer. You may also have heard on the news about the 1% cap on public employees pay rises, this also applies to General Practice in that our funding has been restricted year on year for the last 7 + years resulting in the Primary Care budget reducing from 11% of the overall NHS budget to below 8%. When you consider this in light of the increase in the cost of living over the same period (medical practices are not protected from increased costs) and the increase in demand for appointments, it should become apparent as to why sometimes it is difficult to get an appointment. The Woking Community Hospital is funded out of the Primary Care Budget, is that funding better being distributed out to the 14 GP practices in the area or is it better to provide a centralised service to their patients - there's the question?