Newsletter - Spring 2024




Message from the Partners

As many of you know, the NHS is being overwhelmed at present. In terms of general practice we are;

  • Offering 20% more appointments than before the pandemic.
  • seeing more than 1 million patients per day in England.
  • Caring for 8 million more patients across England, who are currently on hospital waiting lists.

our costs are rising, just like yours are, but we are not receiving any extra funding to help with these.

At the practice, we are feeling the pressure and working as hard as we can to provide the right care for all our patients.

However, the funding we receive means that we are unable to recruit more staff, meaning that;

  • Answering calls is taking longer than we would like.
  • Your waiting time for appointments may increase.
  • Requests for things like medical reports, records and assessments may take longer.

Some other NHS services can help ease the pressure so we may signpost you out of the surgery to the local pharmacy or other services. Please do take advantage of these options. 

Please also help free up clinical time by trying to manage minor illnesses yourself, visit the pharmacy first and attending for health checks, such as long-term condition reviews, when invited as these will help you manage your illness.

From April, we will receive a 2% increase for our main contract for the next year. Inflation rates last year were very high and, even though they have dropped recently, the annual rate is still over 3%. There is also a national living wage increase from 1st April of 9.8%.

We are worried and distressed about the current situation too and wish we could do more.

If you feel strongly about the issue of general practice funding, you may wish to contact your local MP to express your views.

In the meantime, we will continue to do our best to look after our patients and we appreciate your support and consideration during these difficult times.


Trial Changes to the Car Park

Due to the constant miss use and abuse in the car park during school drop off and pick up times we are having a trial where the gates will be shut during  this period.

We apologise if you do have an appointment at this time and the gates are locked.

we will evaluate after the trial is complete and decide whether this becomes a permanent arrangement.

Volunteer Digital Champions

At the practice, we have a few volunteer groups - drivers, patient participation - and we are currently looking to have some volunteer digital champions added to our pool of patients supporting improvements in the practice.

What will a digital champion do?

We are hoping to run some NHS App support sessions at the practice, and the Digital Champion will work alongside the practice team to deliver some coaching sessions for any patient who would like to use the NHS App, but are unsure how or where to start. 

The amount of time required will depend of the demand for the sessions, but we are hping around 2 hours per month.

You will run the coaching sessions during opening hours of the practice so there will always be the support of the practice team in the building.

Why are we doing this?

The NHS App is the very best way to request your repeat prescriptions, review your recent test results and view your medical record from point of access. The app means patients will have this information at their fingertips, and will not necessarily spend time waiting on the phone to speak to someone.

How do you become a volunteer?

Please email with FAO Summer Kendall, and someone will be in touch.


NHS App Support


We are currently looking at our digital access and the needs of our patients. We know there may be a number of patients whow would happily use digital services such as NHS App, but may need help when first setting up the App or may need help feeling confident to use the App. 

We are hoping to run some coaching sessions, delivered by patient volunteers, in the future that will help patients set up the App on their devices, and explain how the app can beneift patients.

If this is something you think you would benefit from, please speak to one of our patient coordinators about completing a questionnaire.

Once we have a sense of how many patients would like these coaching sessions, we will be able to plan and then communicate with patients about requirements for the coaching sessions.


Volunteer Drivers Scheme

If you have difficulty getting to the health centre, you can arrange for a volunteer driver to bring you here for your appointment and take you home afterwards. 

A donation of £3 would be appreciated to cover the cost of petrol.

if you require this service, please contact our Transport Coordinator between 10am-4pm weekdays on 0117 951 3080 giving at least 48 hours notice.

We are now running the scheme across our health centre and Gloucester Road Medical Centre, so please state the practice you are attending when contacting the coordinator to make it easier for the drivers to know where you are needing to go.

Want to become a driver?

If you are over 55 and are interested in becoming a volunteer driver, please contact us on FAO Summer Kendall and we will contact you back with more information. Alternatively, you can visit for more information

Published: Apr 3, 2024