The Thorndike Patient Participation Group (PPG) is a group of active volunteer patients that works in conjunction with the Thorndike Health Care Centre practice staff and doctors to look after the needs of patients and improve the ways in which their health needs are met. This group meets monthly and works to a framework called the “terms of reference”, which describe how it works and what it aims to do. Through the group’s work, we actively seek to understand the patients’ wants and needs by undertaking regular surveys, which then help us identify areas of improvement for the services that are delivered. We also provide information on health promotion and have a corner where we have a range of leaflets available for patients to take away. In addition, we give information about what is happening in the centre through a quarterly newsletter. Seasonal information regarding health and wellbeing can also be found here.
Photo of some members of the PPG
Back row: Graeme Brown, Nicola Porter, John Belfield
Front row: Rose Dillon, Ann Whybrow, Mary Jeffreys
We have been in operation for almost four years and in that time we have undertaken many roles, such as supporting the annual flu vaccination service, undertaking regular surveys, providing monthly health promotion information, publishing a quarterly newsletter, producing information leaflets and providing feedback to the centre’s staff and doctors. Our positive feedback has supported the development of the new nurse-led minor ailments service and in trying to improve access to doctor’s appointments for patients. We cannot do any of this without your help, though, so if you see us with a clipboard asking questions, then we are doing this to help improve services for all of us, as we are all patients here!
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Who are we?
We are a group of active volunteer patients that works in partnership with the Thorndike Health Care Centre practice staff and doctors on behalf of all the patients registered at the practice.
What is our mission?
To look after the needs of patients and to improve the ways in which their health needs are met.
What outcomes do we want to achieve?
* Provide a patient’s perspective, ensuring services, plans and activities respond to patients’ needs and priorities – a ‘critical friend’
*Help other patients take more responsibility for their health and make informed decisions.
*Provide practical support to practice teams, eg, conducting and analysing patient surveys, organising health awareness events, etc
*Foster communication with the wider patient population, building stronger patient–doctor relationships
How do we do this?
We have developed Terms of Reference, which provide the framework for how we work – ensuring that we work in a fair and transparent way. This framework describes an overarching PPG committee which meets and makes decisions. Patient representatives are appointed to this group. Sitting in this committee there are three subgroups, which undertake much of the work: health promotion, communications and patient views. These groups meet regularly and report to the main group. We also have a number of patients who are really interested in what we do but are not able to attend a monthly meeting. These patients have become associates and feed into our work through an email group.
Where do we meet?
The group meets at the Thorndike Health Care Centre with practice staff and doctors once a month, on a Saturday morning. The subgroups meet regularly between times, undertaking specific pieces of work.
Why is this important?
Members of the PPG believe that our role is to help the practice to be proactive in providing services that truly reflect what patients want and need. We seek to support patients in understanding health issues and promoting self-care. Also, having a PPG in our practice means that the team is open to hearing about patients’ needs and wants – this is becoming an indicator of a high quality, caring practice that patients want to join.
Would you like to get more involved?
If you’d like to get more involved, whether that be through receiving newsletters, becoming an associate or through some of the subgroup work, then please complete the ‘expression of interest’ form through the link below. Download and leave in the surgery reception.
(Alternatively, these forms are available on the PPG Noticeboard in both surgeries.)
Resources for the operation of the PPG:
- Terms of reference
- Business case
- Annual work plan
- PPG minutes
- “How to” guides e.g. book an appointment
- Health promotion events
- Expression of Interest Form
- Annual practice survey
- Survey for nurse-led minor ailments appointments
PPG Meeting Minutes