Primary and urgent care survey - out of hours doctor service

Over 500 people used out of hours doctors in the past year.

There were many comments about wanting improved access to GPs out of hours especially at weekends (see section 2.3 above).

In terms of experience of the current out of hours service, there were 34 comments. 

My experience of local NHS services has been brilliant - I saw an out of hours GP at Worthing hospital when I was very ill with tonsillitis/possibly Quinsy and it was very smooth with little waiting time.

We need surgeries to cover 24 emergency services themselves, no more contracting out. Yes they need to have some rules for patients such as an initial telephone appointment to determine the need to come out or just give reassurance. This could be monitored by the current 111 service who have direct access to the patients surgery/duty GP. He/she should have access to the patients files to help them make their diagnosis/treatment more effective. Also should a surgery be unexpectedly unavailable the 111 service could use their own doctor to make a judgement call for an ambulance/medic. So, the one thing is 24 surgery emergency cover.

There were some comments about poor quality interactions with out of hours doctors including delays, poor diagnosis, referring back to GP in hours service.

Tendency for out of hours doctors to do initial diagnosis but then rather than issuing a script there and then refers the patient back to their GP for the next working day. This defeats the objective of being vetted (Triaged) by NHS 111 and then being called to be given an out of hours appointment for the Doctor to refer the patient back to their own GP WITHOUT any treatment. This is particularly worrying when the patient is elderly, vulnerable or a child - treatment, if only remedial should be given to support the carers so that they do not have the continuing worry until the GP surgery normal hours.

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