Patients help practice earn a big thumb’s up from inspectors

Health care staff with members of Mexborough Health Centre Practice Participation Group

Inspectors from the Government’s health watchdog have praised a Dearne Valley GP practice for the success of a support group that patients have set up and run themselves.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) carried out a routine inspection at Mexborough Health Centre and were impressed with the surgery’s Creative Well-Being Group, describing this element of the inspection as ‘outstanding’.

The patients’ supportive work has helped the practice move from its previous CQC rating of ‘Requires Improvement’ rating to ‘Good’.

The group supports vulnerable patients who have, for example, dementia, a mental illness or a physical or learning disability. It meets at the town’s Dolcliffe Community Hall on the first and second Tuesday of the month from 2pm to 4pm, where members hone their artistic skills by making cards, hanging baskets and other items in a friendly setting.

It was set up by Brian Nelson, a member of Mexborough Health Centre’s Patient Participation Group (PPG), who runs the sessions with fellow volunteers Susan and Trevor Lunness, Ray Lund and Frank Knapton. Patients are referred by practice staff and the Creative Well-Being Group’s costs are currently funded by a three year grant from the Big Lottery.

Delighted Practice Manager, Julie Haley, said: “This fantastic CQC assessment is a brilliant achievement for the whole practice team, particularly after such a challenging year.

“It’s a tribute to the hard work of our staff and the PPG, and further evidence that we’re providing excellent services for our 5,400 patients.”

Dr David Crichton, Chair of NHS Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group, which commissions local primary care services, agreed, saying: “Mexborough Health Centre’s success means that all of Doncaster’s 41 GP practices are now rated either Good or Outstanding – an excellent overall achievement.”