Aldborough Surgery is situated in a large rural area 7 miles from the coast of North Norfolk. It serves a population of approximately 3,700 spread out across numerous parishes between Cromer to Aylsham and Edgefield to North Walsham.
Aldborough village offers a wide variety of social and volunteering opportunities including exercise classes, organised walks, various sports and leisure clubs, Arts and Crafts opportunities and ‘Village Care’ which provides a weekly lunch and a volunteer driving service for those (mainly elderly) who cannot get to doctor or hospital appointments.
Aldborough Surgery had been running a successful Patient Participation Group (PPG) for some years. When needed the surgery always had plenty of willing helpers happy to support vaccination clinics and in developing the community woodland on a piece of landing belonging to the practice. However, with so many other volunteering and social opportunities on offer nearby membership of the main PPG committee was starting to decrease.
So the practice manager and PPG Chair came up with a new model for keeping in touch with their patients and listening to their views about accessing care from the surgery. Instead of asking patients to come to the practice, the PPG Chair has gone out into the community and now represents the PPG at all the community opportunities Aldborough has to offer. Feedback collected whilst out and about is then fed back to the practice.
Alongside this the practice has also developed a special area of their website to act as a ‘Patient Voice Forum’. The aim of this is to keep patients up to date about what’s going on at the surgery, but also to provide learning opportunities for the Surgery on patient needs and ideas, and to achieve wider patient reach. This includes surveys, feedback mechanisms, surgery news, health and wellbeing tips, and links to all the local support and social opportunities available in Aldborough.
Aldborough Surgery sees the importance of becoming a member of the local community and working with their patients to make sure they really understand what matters to them.