Case study: Keyworth Medical Practice - Nottingham

The Keyworth Medical Practice in Nottingham (a Principia registered practice) is asking patients to share their views about the service on Patient Opinion. We asked Dr. Neil Shroff how it was going.

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What is your role Keyworth Medical Practice?

I am a GP principal at the practice. I am also the lead clinician for the community-based Keyworth Medical Practice. I also work as a dermatological surgeon at the Nottingham NHS Treatment Centre.

Our dermatological surgery service was approved by the Nottingham County teaching PCT and went live in July 2007. The clinic sees, assesses and treats precancerous skin conditions and also surgically removes basal cell carcinomas that are considered 'low risk'. The service is used by patients registered with a Principia practice.

How have you used Patient Opinion locally?

In order to make sure the service runs smoothly, efficiently and remains patient friendly we survey patients by asking them to fill in a Patient Opinion form. We have also started using Patient Opinion to survey our general practice patients, who do not use the dermatological surgery service.

And why are you doing this?

We decided to use Patient Opinion because we wanted to show our patients publicly the benefits of a community-based service, the convenience of use, the results of surgery and our facilities. If we get any negative patient feedback, we use it to see how we can improve matters.

Has it involved a lot of work?

No, not really. Initial contact was made by Patient Opinion asking if we were interested in promoting our service. Packs were sent to us, and we immediately started to use them. Patients have been very willing to let it be known if they are either happy or unhappy with a service.

How do you make sure patients at your clinic know they can feed back?

It is easy. The vast majority of patients using the service are extremely satisfied and so are willing and enthusiastic to promote the clinic through the Patient Opinion website.

How did you involve your frontline staff?

The main instigator of this has been Barb, our administrator, and our secretaries who send out the Patient Opinion packs. I try to distribute them to patients who have used the service.

Has there been an impact for your patients?

I think there has been a great impact not just for our patients but also for us. The fact that patients are publicly able to give their view of our service and read postings from other service users is great. Luckily for our service, we have had only positive responses. Additionally, I am sure this has helped us obtain a national award for providing the service.

Have you had any critical postings?

We have had no critical postings about the dermatological surgery service itself. We did have one relating to a consultation that occurred during normal general practice, which was completely out of the blue. We are looking into this at the moment.

And finally, what have you learnt?

That the service is meeting patients' needs. The recurring themes seem to be: being treated with respect and dignity, easy parking, good clean facilities and continuity of care. If there is an issue we will try to resolve it quickly and efficiently.