Nine out of ten satisfied with their GP

Nine out of 10 patients have 'confidence and trust' in their family doctor as well as other general practice staff.

New research has revealed that patients rate their overall experience of their family doctor highly, with four out of five saying their GP treats them with 'care and concern' and provides them with enough time to listen to their needs.

With patient choice a priority the NHS Long Term Plan, the GP patient survey also shows that nine out of 10 patients felt involved in decisions about their care, while seven in 10 rated their overall experience of making a GP appointment as 'good'.

However, GPs continue to face pressure and increasing demand, so much so that some patients were waiting longer than they would have liked to see their GP.

From 2021, all patients will also have a new right to access their general practice through video consultations. Currently, only 15 per cent of patients are using GP websites to get an appointment, which is a rise on the previous year. Patients’ overall satisfaction with the service they received from their practice has dipped slightly this year.

Other key findings of the survey include: 82.9 per cent described the overall experience of their GP practice as good; 67.4 per cent of patients rated their overall experience of making an appointment as good; of everyone who wanted a same day appointment, 62.1 per cent got one; of those who have a preferred GP, 48 per cent said that they see or speak to them always, almost always, or a lot of the time; and 91.1 per cent of patients had confidence and trust in the people they saw or spoke to when their GP practice was closed.

Dr Nikita Kanani, acting director of primary care for NHS England, said: “Family doctors in England see nearly one million people every day and this survey shows they appreciate the fantastic job they do alongside other practice staff such as nurses and pharmacists. We will look at making improvements to pre-bookable and same day GP appointments, reviewing patient feedback on face-to-face and online consultations, delivering greater choice and access to appropriate care for patients.

“Increasingly, patients will see their general practices bolstered by teams of health professionals such as social prescribers, pharmacists and therapists, as well as clinical nurses, physician associates and community paramedics, who will give them the specialist care they need, while freeing up family doctors to care for the sickest people.”

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