Phone systems for GP Surgeries
The government announced today that more than one thousand general practices have signed up to make the switch from analogue systems to modern, easy-to-use digital telephones, which is intended to make booking GP appointments easier and support efforts to cut waiting lists.
- Everyone understands the frustration which can be involved in booking a GP appointment and Conservatives want to see as much done as possible to ensure that people do not have to go through an 8am rush to make a booking.
- To address any aspects of the problem which are related to telephony, the government has invested £240 million to help more than one thousand practices make the switch from analogue systems to digital telephones – designed to make sure people can receive the care they need when they need it.
- It is expected every practice in the country will have the new system in place by the end of this financial year, helping to improve patient access to care and put an end to the 8am rush as we work to cut waiting lists.
- Obviously in the long term the most important thing to be done is to reduce the shortage of GPs, which is why the government previously announced a proper NHS staffing programme which includes a massive increase in the number of doctor training places. Sadly, as it takes years to train a doctor, so this is not going to help much in the short term, but it will be critically important in the medium and long term to train more medical professionals so that this country has enough doctors, dentists, nurses and midwives.
In the interests of full disclosure I should add that I work in the telecommunications industry as a manager in Openreach, part of the BT group of companies. However, none of the information in this post came from BT or Openreach services and it does not necessarily reflect the views of BT or Openreach.