Patient Participation Group (PPG)
What is a Patient Participation Group?
A Patient Participation Group is made up of patients, volunteers and staff that advise the practice on what matters most to patients and to identify solutions to problems.
Honor Oak Practice needs you! You can have a say in how the practice is run and what services are provided. You can help the practice to understand what patients think about issues such as opening hours.
Please contact us on 020 398 70300 and speak to one of the receptionists or one of our admin team in order to become a PPG member. They will be happy to help.
The Patient Participation Group can work with the practice to improve:
- Communication by helping to produce newsletters or leaflets that provide patients with information about their health and how to access services.
- Local people’s health by working with the practice to organise health improvement events so that local patients have information that can help them to look after their own health
- Patient experience by talking to patients and letting the practice know what matters to patients.
There are lots of other things that the Patient Participation Group can do but it really is up to you and how much you want to support other patients and your practice.
Examples of PPG activities:
- The Kennedy Way PPG in Yate, Bristol runs a transport scheme to help elderly patients attend appointments at local hospitals.
- The Woodcote Group Practice PPG has a long term condition peer support service. Patients share their experiences with others in a similar position.
- Elliott Hall Medical Centre PPG runs a carers group with the support of a social worker and Crossroads, the carer support organisation.
The most important thing is to find out what patients need and have fun making it happen. The group meets every quarter of the year, but dates will be published on our website. You do need to be realistic about what can be achieved and look for wins and changes that can make a real difference.
The Honor oak Group Practice is committed to improve services provided to our patients. To achieve this it is important that we hear and action from people like yourself your experiences, views, ideas and suggestions to make the services better.
We have a Patient Participation Group(PPG) along with Local involvement network(LINKs) and would like you to be a valued contributor to it. This group can be face to face or virtual Group-emails to discuss any ideas, views suggestion to help build a survey which is then circulated to practice patients. These reviews once collated will be published on the practice website for patients to have a general idea of surgery and we as a practice would be working on the outcomes for service improvement.
Working with your Local Involvement Network
Local Involvement Networks (LINKs) are made up of individuals and community groups whose aim is to work together to improve local services. Their remit covers all the publicly funded health and adult social care services in a local authority area. They are independent, and have specific powers and funding to help them do their job.
Many PPGs are already working with their LINKs on issues that affect the wider population, beyond the community served by their general practice.
There are a number of benefits to getting involved with LINKs:
It offers access and exposure to a wider range of people across the area. LINKs membership can include carers and service users, community leaders, patient representatives, charities, Foundation Trust members, faith groups, tenant organisations, youth councils, organisations representing minority ethnic groups and business federations, many of whom will be interested and able to support the work of HO PPG.
It can help you gauge the views of patients on local health services across a wider area. This could provide you with inspiration for additional initiatives to run not only with the practice, but across the whole of the local authority area, in partnership with other PPGs and local organisations that share your objective of improving the health and wellbeing of the local population.
It can strengthen and support the work. LINKs have statutory powers to ensure that action takes place, and budgets to aid their efforts, so can be a useful partner in carrying out key initiatives. LINKs bring together individuals and groups across the community, not just within health, but also from business and the voluntary sector, among others – this offers you a greater voice and more resources with which to get things done. It can help our PPG to address issues that you may be aware of, but that sit beyond the remit of the practice, for example, improvements that you feel could be made to the provision of services in the local hospital or by the council.
Below are a few key messages about PPGs, their benefits and how they work, which you may find useful.
HONOR OAK PPGs (HO-PPG) – an overview
HO-PPGs act as representatives of the patient population, and are a way of better connecting the general practice with the community it serves. HO-PPGs is made up of a group of volunteer patients, the Practice Manager(Ms Veeru Rajamuthiah), Practice Staff and one or more GPs from within the practice along with LINKs representative. We meet on a regular basis(quarterly) to have open and constructive discussions about the services available – always with a view to taking action to make real improvements for patients and for the practice.
All PPGs are different, and the specific aims of each group depend on local needs and the interests of the participants, although they all aim to help ensure practices remain accountable and responsive to patients’ needs.
From the minute a patient decides they need to see a doctor, to the moment they walk into a consultation room, HO-PPGs have a role in ensuring the patient experience is as smooth and pleasant as possible – from a patient’s dealing with reception staff and ease of booking an appointment, to their experience in the waiting room and the level of choice on offer.
Benefits for HO patients
HO-PPGs are a grass-roots way of affecting change, and involving patients in improving the health and well-being of the local community. You have an increasingly important role to play in helping to give patients a say in the way services are delivered to best meet their needs, and the needs of the local community.
HO-PPGs are about implementing real, positive change in their communities. Examples of the work of existing PPGs include: Improving the appointment system at Honor Oak Group Practice.
Ways to Improve on DNA rates
HO-PPGs help to improve communication between yourself and their practice. By producing regular newsletters, improving practice websites and chatting to patients face to face, you are able to better understand, and help the practice in responding to, the real needs of the community.
Anyone who is willing and able to give their time can get involved, and being part of the PPG can also be a great way to meet people and develop skills in, for example, negotiation, public speaking and dealing with the media.
Benefits for practices
HO-PPGs can help GPs to develop an equal partnership with their patients. You can help them to communicate accurately and honestly with individual patients and with the wider community about key health matters.
HO-PPGs provide an ideal mechanism for gaining feedback from the community. It allows practice staff the opportunity to explain to patients the reasons why services have been set up in a particular way, and why certain procedures are carried out. They are a forum for constructive discussion and input from the community on how services are currently working and what could potentially be done to make them more effective.
HO-PPGs can bring significant benefits to practices: reducing costs, improving services, allowing resources to be used more efficiently, and developing mutually supportive networks outside of individual appointments.