Wistaria & Milford Surgeries will be opening the Iris Suite and start using triage software called Klinik from 13/6/22. We are doing this because we realise how difficult it has been to access appointments and have been looking for potential solutions to improve the care we can offer. See the video and article below for more detail.
What is the Iris Suite?
Over the last two years we have been working hard to secure additional premises. Our patient list size has increased due to new local residential developments which along with an ageing population has increased our practice workload. The Iris suite is a newly refurbished part of the building which houses Wistaria Surgery. The plan is that our clinical team will triage all the urgent and “on the day work” from the Iris Suite. They will liaise with you to give telephone advice or to arrange a face to face consultation in this new suite where appropriate. We will still have some urgent appointments provided at Wistaria and Milford.
The Iris Suite is in the old Red Cross Suite which has undergone a significant refurbishment project over the last few months. We are very grateful to The Friends of Wistaria who have pledged a large sum of money towards the purchase of some of the medical equipment on site which will be used for all patients across our list size of 16,100 patients and growing!
The Iris Suite will handle urgent care requests between 8am – 6.30pm Monday to Friday excluding bank holidays but is not a walk in service.
What will change at Wistaria & Milford?
Our “Home” surgeries of Wistaria Surgery & Milford Medical Centre will open from 8.30am – 6.00pm each weekday excluding bank holidays. The “Home” surgeries will continue to offer routine care and face to face appointments which will increase from 10 to 15 minutes. Where possible your issue will be dealt with by your preferred GP as we know continuity of care is important to our patients and our doctors.
What is Klinik?
We have been reviewing our appointment system which had to adapt due to COVID but now needs to change again. We want to move away from everyone needing to speak to a doctor before a face to face appointment is arranged. We also need a system which can better make use of other clinicians we now have access to. We’ve considered patient and staff feedback, and our aim is to make sure we offer fair access to our appointments based on medical need.
We are launching our new system using a “total triage” portal called Klinik. Patients can submit requests for care online between 6am – 6pm Monday to Friday excluding bank holidays. If you are not able to use the online system then you can be supported to use the system by phone between 08:30-18:00 and we will also have the ability to use the system in our waiting rooms.
Triage is the assignment of urgency of illnesses to decide the order of treatment of a large number of patients. Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic we only triaged some urgent/same day requests. We are adopting this model of total triage which means that every patient request for care will be reviewed before an appointment is booked. This might mean something simple like a blood test being arranged before you see or speak to a doctor or another clinician.
We have had good feedback from patients who have had consultations by telephone and have therefore not had to attend in person. However, we have had many patients stating that they would prefer a face-to-face appointment. We aim to have a mix of these appointments and also to provide you some choice in how you access our support.
How can I make an appointment?
We are aware that recently getting an appointment has often meant a long wait on the phone lines at 8.30am; this isn’t fair for patients, or our call handling staff. We want all patients to have the same opportunity to access our services and for us to be able to prioritise based on clinical need.
You will be able to use the online system via our website to submit appointment requests for new medical problems or ask for follow up of an existing one. The screenshot below shows you what the interface will look like. The system covers various different areas and should be the main point of contact with the surgery. We will no longer accept any requests for care by email.
Using the online forms will be the quickest and most efficient way for you to tell us about a new medical problem. Please be assured that the online form is not the only way to access our care. You can still call us if you’re not able to use the online form. Our team on the phone will guide you through the same system and ask you questions about your medical needs. Please be factual and courteous with our staff, the more information you give them the better able they will be to direct you to the right person. We have also installed a touchscreen in our privacy rooms which are next to reception at Wistaria and Milford. These can be used to submit requests for care.
If you select the “urgent new medical issue” option then your submission will go to the team based at the Iris Suite, this means it is less likely to be dealt with by the clinician of your choosing. You are more likely to get your preferred choice of clinician if you select the “non-urgent new medical issue” option but obviously we don’t want you to delay seeking attention for urgent issues.
Preparing for the change
When submitting a request for care you will be able to login using your NHS login which is what you might use for the NHS app. This is the recommended way to login. If you do not have an NHS login then you will need to enter your NHS number so it would be a good idea to make sure you have this written down somewhere or perhaps saved in your phone.
For more information on why GP surgeries are having to work differently have a look at the resources below.