Careers in General Practice in Bristol, North Somerset & South Gloucestershire
Bishopston is a friendly family practice that values personal, long-standing relationships with their patients.
Having been on a journey of growth and development since merging with another local practice in 2013, the team are proud of the ethos and commitment to patient care that has been established.
The practice currently operates from a converted Victorian house with 3 porta-cabins while they take time to find fit-for-purpose, longer term premises that enable them to meet their ambitions of developing patient service and delivering a community healthcare approach.
Sitting within the Bristol North & West locality, the practice operates within COLIN cluster, comprising Bishopston Medical Practice, Gloucester Road Medical Centre and Horfield Health Centre.
The practice works closely with the Cluster to offer new services and to trial new ways of working. The team is currently developing their minor illness and mental health provision and are part of the One Care scheme to introduce a Pharmacist to the team.
Weekly clinical meetings are held for all clinicians (GPs, Nurses, HCAs, Phlebotomists, Reception Manager and Partners attend). There are also have monthly full-team meetings for all staff and a quarterly Practice Development Afternoon. This includes mandatory training, visitor briefing sessions, specific team initiatives and more strategic discussions.
The team also has a closed team Facebook group and holds regular social events.
The practice employs an iterative appointment model devised by the GPs and Nurses. That enables them to offer a mix of Urgent on Day, Routine, Telephone and Triage appointments. The reception team navigates patients at the first point of contact and onto the triage list if necessary. The Red, Amber and Green system is driven by capacity, increasing Urgent on Day appointments for days with fewer GPs in.
All GP clinical work is shared fairly across the team so that when a GP is on Duty there is very little difference to their working day. Regular breaks are factored in and where possible a pro-rata admin session/time is offered to allow for personal and practice development activity.
One of the GP Partners is on the Bristol CCG LEG and the Business Partner is heavily involved in BNSSG primary care developments.
The team work as one to treat the whole person and the whole family.
An ambitious practice with a wide range of ages, all take a one team approach and everyone’s opinion is valued.
The team takes care to help and support each other, ensuring they maintain a Blame Free culture and have shared, open and honest reflection on cases where things can be learned.
The team also has monthly Gold Standard meetings with community and palliative care colleagues and have clinical leads for key clinical areas such as long-term conditions, frailty, the elderly and women’s health.
Clinical Partners mentor allocated salaried GPs.
Most recent GP hires were attracted to the practice because of its culture and how the workload is shared fairly across all staff. Team members are long established, with the lead nurse working here for more than 30 years and the newest member of staff joining in September 2017.
The clinical team reports that Bishopston is better than any other practice they have worked in for managing work/life balance and day-to-day workload.
Many practice staff have young families and so the practice aims to accommodate their needs with flexible working options where possible.
Term-time working is not currently available but many staff are part-time.
The practice aims to comply with best practice including maternity, paternity and adoption leave, childcare vouchers, compassionate leave, carer’s leave, young family leave and compassionate leave.
From the beginning, new staff benefit from a formal induction programme where they meet and spend time with people in different parts of the practice. In order to help people settle in quickly, the whole team supports new staff, answering any questions they may have and making sure an early social event takes place.
The practice pays for a selection of GP education/study sessions for GPs. All clinicians have pro-rata, paid study leave each year and are encouraged to document and share their learnings with the rest of the team.
Personal Development for everybody on the practice team is a priority and is invested in.
Practice patients are very predominantly young professionals and families. Just 8% of patients are over 65 and the practice therefore does not work with any nursing homes. Patients are often referred to as ‘the worried well’.
The practice does not look after any areas of deprivation nor hold any controlled drugs.
Bishopston consistently scores in the top quartile for patient satisfaction and GP survey results, has a large number of very positive patient comments on NHS Choices and staff often receive Thank You cards from grateful patients.