The Spires Health Centre

Patient Participation Group


Introductory Meeting


Tuesday, 1st July 2014

1:00 pm – 2:00 pm


Present:       Gous Ahmed (patient), Thomas Babb (patient),

Madeline Babb (patient), Elaine Costigan (patient),

Paula Dudley (Practice Manager), Dr. Ajay Ramachandran (GP)


Apologies: Stephanie Cartwright (patient), Peter Hughes (patient),

  1. Welcome and Introductions


  • Aims and Objectives
    • What do we want from a PPG?


PD though it would be a good idea to follow the ground rules below and to be mentioned at the beginning of every meeting,

        • This meeting is not a forum for individual complaints and single issues
        • We advocate open and honest communication between us
        • We will be flexible, listen, ask for help and support each other
        • We will demonstrate a commitment to delivering results, as a group
        • All views are valid and will be listened to
        • We will endeavour to start and finish on time and stick to the agenda


Current news regarding changes within Primary Care and Spires Health Centre.


This was agreed by all.


    • What don’t we want from a PPG?


      • It is not an arena for complaints. Anyone with an individual complaint should address this to PD at another opportunity not during PPG meeting.
      • It is not for individual queries, these can be dealt with PD in privacy


  1. Group Business


      • TB suggested that before nominating Chairperson and other roles to wait until the Group is more established. This was agreed by all.
      • Patient representatives suggested better communication of such events as this Group. PD has put notifications on all repeat prescriptions for all patients and at the rear of Reception a notice board for Spires info had a poster advertising meeting date and comment sheets for people who wish to attend. MB suggested a SMS messages PD said that these had been sent to all patients with a valid mobile telephone number on our system. PD will resend 1 month prior to next meeting.


  1. Current News at Spires


    • New building – AR informed the Group that our CCG (Sandwell & West Birmingham CCG) & NHS England have recently approved the new building plans as Spires will be the only GP surgery hence a smaller development will be necessary. New building should be ready within 3 years.
    • Locums – AR explained the national shortage of Locums and the difficulty in getting cover for our 6pm – 8pm surgery we currently have every Monday evening. If no Locum can be found extra appointments will be available between 7:15am and 6:30pm.
    • On-line prescriptions and appointments – PD notified all about the service that enables patients to book appointments with each GP and Practice Nurse. Prescriptions can be requested and forwarded onto patients preferred Pharmacy.
    • GA asked if the new building could be based in the Wednesbury Town. AR informed GA where the new premises would be built.
    • EC was going to look at the car park facilities and whether or not the Surgery car park will be “pay & display” and if/what provisions would be in place for Patients.
    • PD briefly explained the projects that NHS England has proposed (although it is optional) for all GP’s. Avoiding unplanned hospital admissions – to give all vulnerable/at risk patients a named GP and a direct line to have telephone contact to the Surgery before deciding to visit Accident & Emergency and keep visits to a minimum. This register is to be 2% of the patient register.
    • All patients over the age of 75 will too have a named GP and letters were being sent this week informing them.


  1. Next Steps…


    • MB asked if the “Expert patient” scheme was still available for patients to get a better awareness of their illness. PD will look into this as she feels that this is a service that has been dissolved, if so, to enquire if a Drug Company would be willing to sponsor a lunch meeting.


  1. Date & Time of next meeting


      • 2nd September 2014 @ 1:00pm 2:00pm
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