Published on: 25 October 2023
Demand for general practice services has increased significantly since the pandemic and for that reason GP practices across Herefordshire and Worcestershire have evolved in how they manage their patients.
Today, your doctor oversees a skilled team that will assess and direct you to the right treatment via the fastest route, so you receive the best care and outcome for your needs.
It is not always necessary to see a GP for certain conditions and sometimes the most appropriate way to be treated is to be directed to the right professional, first time.
The role of GP practice receptionists has also changed in recent years to include an increased focus on care navigation. They now play a key part in helping patients receive the right treatment, as quickly as possible.
They are trained to listen, ask the right questions and direct people to the right service. All information given to them is treated confidentially. Having such a wide range of health professionals at your general practice enables it to provide a comprehensive range of care.
Dr Will Taylor, Medical Director for NHS Herefordshire and Worcestershire said: “Practices are working incredibly hard to ensure they can adapt to the rising demand for their services while still providing the best care for patients.
“This means having have a wide range of health professionals on staff that can look after your needs.
“Sometimes seeing a GP isn’t always the most appropriate for your needs. Our skilled receptionists work closely with your practice GPs to ensure you are directed to the right professional.”
There also a number of ways to contact your local GP practice – via a form on the surgery’s website, by phone or in person.
New systems in place mean also that you will be told on the day what the next steps are without the need to call back due to all appointments being taken for the day. Speak to your practice reception team to find out more about these roles and what your practice offers.
Some of the professionals that are working at GP practices across Herefordshire and Worcestershire:
Reception team (Care Navigators)
Your first port of call: specially trained professionals who can tell you about the services available and make sure you get the right care.
Need extra support? They can help you understand and manage your health and care.
Social prescribing and health and wellbeing coaches
They can help you with your emotional and physical wellbeing, giving you access to support services.
They can help with a range of conditions from minor injuries to asthma and can carry out home visits.
These experts can diagnose and treat a wide range of muscle and joint conditions, as well as referring you to a specialist.
Physician associates and practice nurses
They work alongside GPs and can perform physical examinations, arrange tests and diagnose and treat certain health conditions.
Need to review your medicines or have a question about them? Clinical Pharmacists can help. Many can also prescribe medicines and advise you about side effects.