The Chair of Blackburn with Darwen CCG, Mr Joe Slater, recently met with representatives of eight GP practices in the Blackburn area to discuss healthcare services in the area.
Mr Slater explained how the CCG commissioned services and how it works to ensure that they provide high-quality patient care.
A number of issues were discussed, including:
- The importance of getting clear messages out to the public with regard to urgent care and care which is needed when GP surgeries may be closed.
- The importance of preventing ill health and of encouraging healthy lifestyles.
- The need to get the views of different people using a variety of methods in addition to surveys. These could include face-to-face discussion.
- As many ways as possible should be used to get important messages out to the public, possibly including videos (such as those shown in surgeries), LED displays, leaflets, media relations, radio or others. The importance of using appropriate languages, e.g. Urdu, was raised, as was the possibility of putting information in practices for those who attend. It is also important to get messages out to the large numbers of people who never go to the surgery. A local video giving details of out of hours and urgent care services was suggested.
- Questions about TB.
- The problem of high rates of diabetes across Blackburn with Darwen.
- Saturday access to GP services was raised as an issue.
The meeting, which was also attended by Blackburn with Darwen CCG lay member Mr Paul Hinnigan and other CCG staff, was the first of a planned series of interactions with patient participation groups from GP practices.
To find out more about joining a Patient Participation Group, ask at your local surgery.
The practices represented were:
Audley, Bangor Street, Dr Gebbie’s Practice, Pringle Street, Redlam, Roe Lee, Shadsworth and WItton Medical Centre.