Bearsted Medical Practice

01622 737326

About our Patient Group

PPG Action Plan 2019

Bearsted PPG Action Plan 2019 Final

Latest newsletter

Please visit the PPG Newsletter page

Bearsted Patient Participation Group (PPG) Membership

In line with NHS recommendations, the Practice runs a Patient Participation Group (PPG).

This group of volunteers has been set up to discuss ways in which the surgery may enhance the needs of the patients and assist the surgery in making improvements where necessary. The Bearsted PPG currently comprises 8 members:

Arlene Broadhurst, Chris Dobson (Secretary), Joan East, Goff Norrington, Jane Shepherd, Linda Summerfield, Jeanette Ward (Chair).

The volunteers have a wide range of backgrounds including senior nursing and administrative roles within the health service, academia, sales, pharmaceutical manufacturing and quality assurance and a number are active in various charities.

If you are interested in finding out more about joining this group, please pick up a leaflet from reception.

Terms of Reference Feb 6 2017

Downs Mail published in January 2015 a small article from the PPG. See below.

Patients urged to join group

Bearsted Medical Practice Patient Participation Group (PPG) is encouraging more of its 12,000 surgery patients to join free so that it represents all age groups.

The group aims to improve communication between staff and patients and encourage patients to take more responsibility for their own health.  Anyone interested should email

Members can join an email group and receive heathcare information and feed back their views to influence NHS services.

At its second annual meeting chairman Jeannette Ward said the group asked patients what health advice was needed.  Dementia topped the ist and Admiral Nurses later addressed a well attended meeting.  A talk on obesity is planned for March.

One patient suggested a surgery monitor to improve doctor communication – the doctors then purchased one as a direct response to this idea.  There is also a suggestion box.  Regular meetings are held with the surgery tea.

Survey Results

Survey results can be seen on this page >>

Walk in and Wait Clinic

Patients might be interested to know that the walk in and wait clinic was introduced as a result of the high volume of telephone calls being received for appointments.  The surgery did not previously score highly on call answering waiting times as it is not a large enough surgery to have an extensive switchboard.  The surgery introduced the walk in and wait clinic as an attempt to solve this problem.

Appointments on the same day

Th surgery operates a WALK IN AND WAIT CLINIC in the mornings between the hours of 9am to 10.30AM with the surgery doors opening at 8.30AM. This operates on a first come, first served basis and will involve a wait.  HOWEVER, you will definitely be seen by a doctor and if your wait is going to be more than 20 minutes, YOU ARE WELCOME TO GO AWAY AND COME BACK. YOU WILL NOT LOSE YOUR PLACE IN THE QUEUE. Approximate waiting times will be advertised on the day in surgery to help you make a decision.  If you do go away and come back, YOU WILL NOT LOSE YOUR PLACE. When you return, please report to reception, who will check your position in the queue and re-insert you into the right slot.

if you wish to see a particular doctor, please mention this to the receptionist when you book in on arrival and this will be flagged up against your name.  Providing that the doctor is available you will be seen by them although this may necessitate a slightly longer wait.

Afternoon Appointments

Pre-bookable appointments can be made up to 2 weeks in advance.  If you require an appointment for a non-urgent matter we would advise you ring to book this at the BEGINNING OF THE WEEK.  Receptionists are only able to open up the diaries two weeks ahead, therefore, if you ring towards the end of the week available appointments for the next two weeks may be used up already.  It is not possible for the receptionists to open up a further two weeks in advance of a Monday so you will need to recontact the surgery.  If a cancellation slot becomes available, then you would be offered this.

There are a number of emergency appointments reserved for emergency use only in the afternoons.  These can be booked ,for problems that need to be addressed that day but have missed the walk in and wait clinic, from 2pm onwards.

Virtual Patient Participation Group

If you would like to join the patient participation group but can’t commit to attending meetings, you can join the virtual group.  This virtual group of people will be contacted with news of the surgery and will be asked to occasionally complete surveys and give feedback on the Practice.  If this is something that you would like to join, send an e mail to

Practice Appointment System

One of the areas that seem to attract a lot of discussion, is the Practice appointment system.

There is never going to be an appointment system that suits everyone!

We want to keep you informed of the reasons for the current system as this builds a healthy relationship between the Practice and its patients’

As well as the reason given above, another reason the Walk in and Wait Clinic was introduced is because, on the old appointment system, patients who couldn’t get appointment sat and waited at 12 noon until seen. This caused delays to the GP’s for their afternoon patient visits outside of the surgery. This meant that patients who were sometimes more unwell and unable to get to the surgery  waited a long time at home for the doctor to arrive.  Walk in and Wait eases this problem.

Annual General Meeting

This was held on 11th September 2014.  The PPG report from the AGM is below:

PPG report of 2nd AGM.docx

Committee Meetings

These are held every 3 months.  A summary of the discussion points from March’s meeting can be found in the document below.

PPG March Meeting 2014.doc

We would like to hear your views and suggestions on the Practice appointment system.  Does it work for you?

Email us on and let us have your comments.

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