Lakeside Healthcare Stamford responds to CQC inspection findings
Swift action is being taken at Lakeside Stamford following a Care Quality Commission inspection. The GP Partners, staff and executive team acknowledge issues around patient care, access to appointments and practice management, which were being addressed prior to the inspection.
The Stamford team, with considerable input and support from Lakeside Central team, is focusing its efforts on addressing the CQC’s concerns and listening to patient feedback while continuing to provide day-to-day services for the community.
The CQC said: “The practice adjusted how it delivered services to meet the needs of patients during the Covid-19 pandemic. However patients were unable to access care and treatment in a timely way.”
Lakeside Stamford said: “We are aware that patients have struggled to access appointments. During the pandemic, we, along with all GP surgeries nationally, are continuing to offer the majority of appointments via telephone or digital means, however we continue to see patients face to face at both Sheepmarket and St Mary’s practices if clinically appropriate. Although we have strict social distancing measures in place our doors are now open and we are safely ensuring patients can access the services they need.
“Issues have not been helped by a pent-up demand for GP services which has been the picture nationally and resulted in our phone lines being overloaded and appointments being booked up at a faster than ever rate.
“Resolving access issues for patients is a massive priority for us for the coming months and we have already taken action in this area. In response to patient feedback we have reintroduced pre-bookable telephone slots in addition to our same day triage appointments. Our upgraded telephone system was installed at the time of the inspection and recent average call waiting times were 4 minutes and 20 seconds on Mondays, which are always a time of peak demand, to 2 minutes and 13 seconds on Wednesdays. Waiting times on all days are an improvement to those experienced by patients using the previous system.’
The CQC said: “The way the practice was being led and managed did not promote the delivery of high-quality, person-centred care.”
Lakeside Stamford said: “With the help of our Transformation Manager Diane Simes, we are strengthening our management team and have appointed a Practice Manager and are recruiting an Operations and Compliance Manager to work alongside our new Patient Services Manager. The new senior management team will lead the transformation of post pandemic services.
“Four new GPs have been appointed and are due to start work within the next few weeks and we are actively recruiting more as they become available. We are also recruiting into the nursing, dispensary and administrative teams.
“The new management team will ensure staff are supported, have the opportunity to develop and have appropriate training for their roles.’
The CQC said: “Patients were not always receiving effective care and treatment that met their needs.”
Lakeside Stamford said: “Many of the routine activities, such as medication reviews and annual reviews of long-term conditions were not able to be carried out due to Covid restrictions. Guidance advised that the focus should be on managing the impact of the pandemic and ensuring rapid roll out of vaccinations, so inevitably some of these routine activities were deferred.
“Our GPs, assisted by clinical pharmacists, have worked many hours of overtime to clear the backlog of medication reviews, which are due to be completed this month.
“We have also supplemented our team with additional specialist nurses allowing us to efficiently review patients with long term conditions including diabetes and asthma.”
Lakeside Stamford has, and will continue to remain in close contact with the NHS Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group and other partners while these strategies are embedded. The new PPG committee is working collaboratively with the Transformation Manager and has been fully informed of the outcome of the inspection at an early stage to ensure that the patient voice is a valued part of any change.
Lakeside Stamford is very proud of its team, which has worked throughout a very difficult 18 months to provide GP services and ensure that patients received their vaccines in a timely and efficient manner. The outcome of the inspection in June, which is one of the first to have taken place since the pandemic, has been devastating for all staff at Lakeside. However we remain positive about working to restore confidence in the quality of care we provide to the community of Stamford and beyond.
Published: Aug 2, 2021