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Survey shows 77 per cent positive rating for GP practices in NHS Highland area

By Gordon Calder

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SEVENTY-seven per cent of patients in the NHS Highland area are satisfied with their GP practices, according to a survey.

The results from the latest Scottish Health and Care Experience (HACE) survey from Public Health Scotland show

that out of the 13,078 responses, 77 per cent gave a positive rating to the overall care provided by a GP practice.

The survey was sent to a random sample of the public and covered a number of areas in health and care experience, including treatment and advice from GP Practices, COVID-19 and out of hours healthcare.

When asked about the last time they needed to urgently see or speak to a doctor or nurse from their GP practice, 85 per cent of those surveyed were happy with the length of time they had to wait.

There was a 73 per cent positive feedback rating for getting to speak to a doctor at a GP Practice, 82 per cent for getting to speak to a nurse, and 84 per cent for a pharmacist at a GP practice.

The survey shows a high level of satisfaction for GP practices in the Highlands
The survey shows a high level of satisfaction for GP practices in the Highlands

During their appointments, 89 per cent of those surveyed felt they were listened to, and 87 per cent felt they were treated with compassion and understanding while a similar number said it was easy to contact their GP Practice in a way that they wanted.

For out of hours healthcare, 70 per cent of the public gave positive feedback for the overall care experienced during services.

Jill Mitchell, head of primary care at NHS Highland, said: "After a challenging time for GPs and GP Practices, having to adapt during and after the COVID-19 pandemic, it is great news for NHS Highland to see such positive feedback from the public about their recent experiences at their GP Practices."

Dr Al Miles, chairman of NHS Highland GP sub committee, added: "It's fantastic to see Highland GP practices scoring well in this survey. Our practices are scoring significantly better than the Scottish average. Highland's strong performance is down to the hard work of GPs and their teams, who throughout the pandemic maintained a high level of service to patients.

"GP teams had to adopt changed ways of working during the pandemic to keep patients and staff safe. There has also been a rise in demand for GP services over the past year or so, with most practices reporting being at least 20 per cent busier than pre-pandemic. As a consequence of all this, GP teams are working at an unsustainable pace, and will have to continue to innovate and change how care is delivered in order to overcome these challenges.

"Given all this, I would like to congratulate Highland GPs and their teams on such excellent results," he added.

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