Contact us online. Get help from your GP with our online consultation service.

Letter to Patients

July 2023

Dear Patient

Unfortunately, we have seen a significant increase in unacceptable behaviour from an ever-increasing number of our patients.  Our staff are now regularly on the receiving end of aggressive and abusive behaviour including being shouted at, having objects thrown at them and being threatened and intimidated, this is both distressing and upsetting for our staff and it will not be tolerated.   This behaviour is having a direct impact on the recruitment and retention of staff.   Our staff are our most valuable asset and without them we cannot continue to provide the services you require.  We will be enforcing our Zero Tolerance Policy and any unacceptable behaviour may result in patients being removed from the Practice list. 

Did you know…

  • Over the last 3 years we have seen a significant increase in demand for appointments, data shows this has more than doubled from 2020 to 2023
  • So far this year, we have booked over 56,000 Doctor and Advanced Nurse Practitioner (ANP) appointments, this compares to just under 24,000 appointments in the same period of 2020
  • In 2023, almost half of our appointments were face to face compared with a third in the 2020
  • We currently receive an average of 26,000 telephone calls per month
  • In June 2023 patients waited an average of 10 minutes for their call to be answered, this compared with October 2021 when it was an average of 39 minutes
  • We have dispensed over 149,359 items of medication this year
  • Over a 12 month period this is an average of just over 27,000 items every month

Our Dispensary has recently fallen behind their dispensing target of dispensing within 3 working days.  This has been caused by multiple factors including Bank Holidays, national supply chain issues, national driver shortages and staff shortages.  Some of these issues have been beyond our control however we fully accept that not achieving our target of 3 working days is unacceptable. 

At the time of writing this letter we are currently dispensing within 5 working days and whilst this is an improvement, we acknowledge that improvements are still required. 

We are working extremely hard behind the scenes to improve our dispensing times: 

  • Our staff are working additional hours (including working late nights and weekends)
  • We have streamlined our procedures to make them more efficient
  • We open a second hatch at Hedon Group Practice at peak times and
  • We have recruited additional administration staff to maximise the efficiency of our qualified dispensers

This month, there has been a large amount of medication which hasn’t been collected.  This then requires additional work to put the medication back into stock, cancel the issue and code the medication as being uncollected.  At a time when we’re under immense pressure uncollected medication wastes time and resources.

We are still asked the question why we have not opened Church View Surgery.   This site was reopened for face-to-face appointments in September 2021.  We are also often asked why we haven’t reopened the Dispensary at Church View Surgery.   Having two dispensaries open to our patients in Hedon means carrying double the amount of stock and double the number of staff.  For patients collecting medication, having two dispensing sites was a common source of confusion which has led to complaints in the past.  We are using the dispensing space at Church View Surgery to deal with all of our home and remote delivery requests.  We realise that this may means longer than usual queues at Hedon Group Practice so we ask for your patience and kindness during this time.

These are a few ways you can help yourself and us:-

  • Being patient and kind to our staff, they really are working hard and doing their best to help you
  • Giving other patients privacy whilst at the reception and dispensary counters
  • Phone after 2pm for test results
  • Order your medication via the NHS App or Patient Access – www.patientaccess.com
  • Collect your medication once you have received a text message to confirm that it is ready
  • Telephone us between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday with any dispensary queries rather than queueing – please ring 0333 332 4242 and press option 2
  • Submitting any queries regarding medication via Klinik on our website: www.holdernesshealth.nhs.uk

If you would like to contact us with a question or any feedback, you can use our Feedback email address

[email protected]   or you can book an appointment with a member of our Senior Management Team at our next Meet the Managers Day on Saturday 19th August 2023, by telephoning 01482 895481 to book an appointment.

Thank you for your patience and co-operation.

The Partners and Senior Management Team