Labour Group has submitted a response to the local NHS Clinical Commissioning Group's survey on their proposed two-year pilot for delivering minor injury services in South Gloucestershire.
The Clinical Commissioning Group says:
"Our proposal involves GP practices in South Gloucestershire providing assessment and treatment of minor injuries. It is proposed that appointments for the minor injuries service would be available between 8.30am and 6.30pm Monday to Friday. We are also considering options for providing a service outside of these hours".
The survey runs until 7pm on Friday 11 September. Please take the chance to have your say. The survey is online HERE
In our response, Labour Group said:
Q: What do you think will work well about this proposal?
Location could work well, but only where patients live close to surgeries that are participating and at the hours they are open.
Q: What do you think we could improve to make this proposal better for you?
The proposed opening times are woefully inadequate and compare very unfavourably with the minor injury service delivered from Yate and South Bristol. Minor injuries out of hours would still require a considerable journey, either to Yate or Southmead.
We seek clarification on the use of the phrase “appointments for the minor injuries service” as we assumed that injured patients would present without the need for appointments.
We are concerned that dispersing the service could lead to inequalities in access resulting in a ‘postcode lottery’: some surgeries will be able to see patients quicker or offer more. Surgeries are unlikely to be able to deliver the full range of services equitably, such as x-ray.
We are also concerned that some of your tick-box questions are loaded and urge you to treat responses with caution accordingly. In particular, providing extra staff into a GP surgery will inevitably be better than nothing, but not necessarily the preferred solution.
Q: Do you have any additional comments?
Labour Group understands that the CCG has developed its thinking since issuing this survey, and that all GP surgeries in the district would participate, and that you would provide an out-of-ours service from Cossham Hospital. We would welcome public confirmation of this re-think. Labour Group would strongly support using Cossham Hospital, and not just for out-of-hours provision.
Our concerns about inequity of access detailed above would not be addressed unless all GP surgeries had a full range of facilities, which surely would not be cost effective. We would welcome data on the cost comparison between centralising the minor injury services at Cossham Hospital and dispersing them to local GPs, together with a comparison of the service offer and anticipated waiting times for each option.