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The East Dulwich Forum
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messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by Penguin68 April 19, 09:04AM

you mean "computer says no" and they are incapable of resolving the error, really???? And then asking you to provide proof of identity, it just beggars belief. Actually it doesn't.

There are 2 sets of problems here, neither entirely of the practices making - firstly that the IT solutions that the practice has 'bought into' (pretty well with their arm up their backs, but they could never have afforded to develop their own) are flaky - and interlinking their own systems into them is difficult - hence difficulties about e.g. appointment making on-line - NHS computerisation has a tragic history, frankly - and secondly that no one is sure how data protection should actually work - hence proof of identity stuff in case anyone inadvertently hands over personal data. Combine that with a slightly jobsworth attitude (almost certainly because individuals feel, or are, disempowered to buck the system) and you have a recipe for bureaucratic nightmares.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by dbboy April 19, 10:32AM

It is frankly sad that a practice that covers an area covering both parts of East Dulwich and Honor Oak/Forest Hill fails so spectacularly to provide a coherent service to it's patients. It is a business with a licence to practice from the NHS. I appreciate that they are reliant on the NHS computer system, but nothing would stop them reverting to an alternative system until such time the NHS system becomes more "stable".

Redirecting patients to the Lister Center in Peckham is nothing less than madness, not only is it financial suicide for the practice, for patients it's an inconvenience. I can understand why people present themselves at A&E rather than deal with an utterly hopeless practice. I hear tales of other practices and they run nothing like FHRGP. Why can they not learn and improve, rather continuing to diving head first into a downward spiral.

CQC need to put the practice back into special measures until such time they can demonstrate that they not only meet the minimum standard but exceed these measure's.

Furthermore the practice needs to sort out its issues with the pharmacy across the road so patients cease being stuck in the middle. I refuse to use the pharmacy and prefer alternatives that actually care about and look after their customers.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by savvygirl April 20, 01:33PM

Is Dr Tom Boswell still there? I found him very professional and efficient. Same goes for Dr Liz Main. Two very good doctors. I hope they stay.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by dbboy May 13, 03:09PM

Was told a GP wanted to review my meds, tried making an appointment only to be told "you have to call at 10am", and which I did a little later. By 10.45, no appointments available, you need to call back at 10am or come to the surgery at 10am.

HOW long is this farce going to be allowed to continue for. How are you supposed to see a GP if no appointments are available, I actually do not need an appointment today, next week would have been fine. Computer says NO. And if you don't have a meds review your next prescription will not be acted upon.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by singalto May 13, 03:29PM

dbboy I now book meds reviews with Lesley, the practice pharmacist. He is extremely pleasant and very knowledgeable.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit was may 14, 09:17am by singalto.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by dbboy May 13, 09:03PM

I have no issues with the pharmacist, my issues relate to the totally inept reception and call centre staff and ultimately the management who can't manage their way out of a paper bag.

The surgery continues to fail to meet basic expectations and if they are unable to provide a service, the management should either hand over the reigns to people who do care about the quality of the service being provided, or else the surgery should be placed back into special measures until such time they can consistency prove they are competent to provide an adequate service to its patients.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit was may 13, 09:07pm by dbboy.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by Sue May 14, 07:23AM

Dbboy, it's very easy to change GP practices.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by OutOfFocus May 14, 08:26AM

How long does it take to change, and is there an interim period when you might have trouble getting care.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by dbboy May 14, 10:02AM

When did I mention I wanted to leave, what I would like to see is the practice provide sufficient appointments for its patients which it frankly is unable to achieve and deliver.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by slarti b May 15, 01:01PM

I am waiting for a telephone appointment to discuss some test results. I have twice been told to ring back "next week" because they have run out of slots. I have also given up once because phone took too long to answer.

If I cant get something next week this may be the final straw and I will move after 30 years.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by slarti b May 17, 11:45AM

slarti b Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I am waiting for a telephone appointment to discuss some test results. I have twice been told
> to ring back "next week" because they have run out of slots. I have also given up once because
> phone took too long to answer.
>
> If I cant get something next week this may be the final straw and I will move after 30 years.

I rang up yesterday but the reception was closed to all but urgent calls for training. I got through today (eventually) and tried , for the third time to make an appointment to be told all slots gone and to ring back on Monday.

So, after 2 weeks, 3 calls where I got through and 5 or 6 calls where I couldn't get through (gave up after 15 mins, line engaged, surgery closed) I am still waiting to get an appointment to discuss some tests.

TIme for a change

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by Penguin68 May 17, 11:55AM

I rang up yesterday but the reception was closed to all but urgent calls for training.

Thursday afternoons (if that was when it was) are their regular staff training slot - they are back on line by 4:30. They do need to train, clearly, and within work hours. I assume they think that Thursday afternoons are a relatively slack time otherwise.

It would be most efficient if they could switch their 'reminders' during calls waiting to be answered to notifications that all appointments are now allocated - then at least people wouldn't be holding for an hour waiting to be answered.

Does anyone know whether their on-line appointment system actually works?

And it is worth noting that they are quite good about contacting you when there is any urgency about test results - if you have been contacted and still can't arrange an appointment then that is really poor and worthy of a formal complaint.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by dbboy May 17, 12:00PM

shame they don't read this thread, they might then comprehend how frustrated patients are with their incapability to offer appointments.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by tasha1 May 17, 06:30PM

I asked them last week if their online booking works (as whenever I try, it says this isn't available). I was told they release online bookings at 10am each day.

I've been at the practice for 52 years and I've never known it this difficult to get a non emergency appointment. I find it especially frustrating when they text to ask you to make an appointment following tests but it's impossible to actually get seen!

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by slarti b May 18, 11:18PM

Penguin68 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> Thursday afternoons (if that was when it was) are their regular staff training slot - they are back
> on line by 4:30. They do need to train, clearly and within work hours.

It was Thursday morning, the time I had been told to ring back the previous time I had called. I also disagree they need to stop working during the week to train.

Anyway, on Friday afternoon I went to another local GP and, after 10 minutes filling in forms I am now registered with them and have received the test results I had been trying for 2 weeks to get a telephone appointment to discuss with Forest Hill practise.

Once you got to see a doctor Forest Hill were OK but that is not sufficient. My own view, after 30 years with them , is they are not fit for purpose. I strongly suggest that, if patients are not happy with the service they provide, move elsewhere.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by garages2018 May 19, 01:08PM

Hi Slarti b . My Doctor is at Dulwich Medical Centre. Its worst at this centre. 1st you ring at 8.00 in the morning you get a engaged single this last for half hour, then they turn the system on, after a long message telling you about the surgery it comes up with seventh in line, this goes on for 20 minutes, when answered you get told no appointments and to top it staff phoned in sick so no conversations or ring backs, told if you have problem ring 111.
I fought it was a service for the doctors to see sick people. This Medical centre has 6 rooms and no doctors and if there is one its a trainee. Most doctors surgerys if staff don't turn up they get a relive doctor or two not say that we have none today.
One more point. James Barbers comment on after he intervened to get it running right which it did maybe he needs
to see now what is going on in this surgery.
If you want a appointment its three weeks wait or if you want to take a day off line up at 7.30


HAS ANY ONE HAD THE SAME PROBLEM AT THIS SURGERY

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by singalto May 20, 08:29AM

I need an urgent appointment but have had to call 111 as the GP surgery phone cut out as soon as I was put in the queue. This happened 8 times this morning.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by malumbu May 23, 01:22PM

Chaotic today but I do have a lot of time for the doctors there. It is useful to put feedback up on NHS choices. I'm registering for patient access but they have a list of providers. Anyone any experience (these are the online companies that you can register through).

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by dbboy May 23, 03:13PM

Was chaotic also yesterday morning with two queues, those who had a pre-booked appointment (just me) and those that needed an appointment. This resulted in a long queue of people who were slowly being processed at the window starting at 10am. It was not long before the receptionist said their were no more appointments, come back the next morning.

The doctor said, it was primarily due to things;

Firstly it was down to budgetary constraints
Secondly the doctors are fully aware of the problems patients are having getting appointments
Thirdly, their is an insufficient number of doctors looking to work in general practice and this practice is finding it hard to fill the vacancy. It was further explained that this is a national problem.

Well if FHRGP actually provided a service to its patients and helped rather than hindered patients it wouldn't be in the mess it is in right now and patients would not be leaving to go to other practices.
And they do not appear to like it being highlighted that problems exist, but rather blame the Government for budget issues.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by Penguin68 May 23, 03:42PM

Well if FHRGP actually provided a service to its patients and helped rather than hindered patients it wouldn't be in the mess it is in right now and patients would not be leaving to go to other practices.
And they do not appear to like it being highlighted that problems exist, but rather blame the Government for budget issues.


The doctor said they'd had difficulty filling a vacancy. In what way is this a valid response to that? We know that those doctors who are in training are no longer as interested in joining the private world of GP practices, but prefer to stay in the tertiary National Health as hospital doctors with the opportunities of much more lucrative private practice than is offered the already privately practicing GPs. We know that GP work is increasingly stressful, and not well rewarded unless you are a practice partner. This is a training and recruitment issue, not necessarily anything to do with government budgets, neither did the doctor claim that it was.

FHRGP has difficulties offering appointments because it doesn't have enough GPs working there, although it is trying to remedy this through recruitment. In so far as it can, it does offer a service to patients, and actually not that bad a one, as regards the medical staff there. The issue is (and typically is for most practices) one of booking and resource allocation. You will find that a very small %age of patients are making a very large demand on staff time (that's true of most inner city practices). Those of us with only occasional needs feel frustrated (and not without reason) but we shouldn't necessarily extrapolate our poor personal experiences across the whole practice and all patients.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by Pugwash May 23, 04:28PM

My GP surgery appears to always have GPs who work a variety of hours - many of them part time. Some times a 2 week wait to appointments. I went to make an appointment in person one day and was offered one for an hour later! Could not take it as had prior engagement so made another appointment which was around 10 days time.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by slarti b May 24, 09:36AM

Pugwash, are you complaining about a 2 week wait before you actually had the appointemnt ? Luxury!!!!

I spent 2 weeks trying to MAKE an appointment. FHGP were OK for urgent stuff but anything non-urgent or routine was a nightmare to get seen. That is why I have moved.

And rememebr that non-urgent is not the same as not important.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit was may 24, 09:48am by slarti b.

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by undergran May 24, 11:16PM

Three week wait to see pharmacist - very depressing situation

messageRe: Forest Hill Road Surgery - again.
Posted by Pugwash May 25, 06:05PM

It was for a non urgent appointment so was not worried - however when seen was asked to get an x ray to rule out a certain condition.

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