The future


BPSPLG has existed through a period of considerable growth by the Practice, especially after its move to the current premises. Our original challenge was to recruit members and despite the large database, the recruitment of active members is still a major challenge. Active members are essential if we are to achieve the aims which have underpinned our existence as a patient  group. Our record over the first decade illustrates what can be achieved. The Patient Group was active in campaigning for extended opening hours and more recently, it was instrumental in  the retention of  an Ultrasound service at the Surgery serving BPS and the wider community. Given all the changes occurring in the provision of health care locally, there is considerable opportunity and indeed need for patient involvement. We are optimistic and look forward to the next decade.

Our major focus in 2019 will be to raise awareness of Online medical services and to work with the Surgery on your behalf to make them more effective for your needs.

If you are a patient and would like to volunteer to help with things such as minute taking of meetings, preparation of refreshments or indeed you would like to just come along to hear what is going on in this practice and the wider NHS, we would love to hear from you. We have recently introduced a scheme of Champions to work on specific activities. At present we are looking for Champions with IT skills or who are prepared to give customer feedback on to work on improving online services,  with an interest in online services, heath needs of young families, Carer groups and dementia.

BPSPLG has worked with  staff at the Surgery to extend the range of questions raised in the Friends and Family Test  and we would value your comments on these topics. Ask at Reception for a copy of the survey to complete. All responses will be acknowledged.

View previous issues of the Newsletter which aims to keep patients informed about national and local health issues and keeps you up to date with Surgery matters.

Do come to Patient Group meetings which are held on the second Wednesday of the Month at Balham Park Surgery, 7pm to 9pm in the Education Room. You will be very welcome.

Name: The name of the group shall be ‘THE BALHAM PARK SURGERY PATIENT LIAISON GROUP’ (the Group) based at the Balham Park Surgery, Balham High Road, London SW17.

Association: The Group shall be affiliated to the National Association for Patient Participation (N.A.P.P.) and be governed by the rules of the N.A.P.P.

Aims & Objectives:

  1. To help Doctors and Surgery staff to provide, and patients to obtain, the best possible healthcare through discussions at regular meetings with surgery staff deliberating on local and national health issues.
  2. Contribute to patient satisfaction through opinion surveys and other means, including the examination of complaints, as well as monitoring the performance and targets set by the Practice.
  3. Produce two newsletters for Practice patients per annum which will contain appropriate information on local and national health matters.
  4. Organise as required appropriate educational seminars on health matters suggested by patients which will be open to all patients of the Practice.
  5. Monitor activities of Wandsworth Primary Care Trust and assess the effect any decisions or developments proposed by the Primary Care Trust may have on patients of the Practice.
  6. Ensure that the Group has a wide and representative membership from the Balham Park Surgery patient population.

Membership:

Membership shall be open to all patients and staff of the Practice regardless of ethnicity, disability, age or sexual orientation.

Committee

The committee shall consist of three officers-a Chairman (revolving), Secretary and Treasurer-and at least six other Committee members nominated and elected annually. The Committee shall endeavour to meet at least six times in any period between two Annual Meetings. Four members plus one officer shall constitute a quorum. The Committee may co-opt up to two people. Co-opted members are not eligible to vote. All patients and staff of the Practice shall be entitled to attend all committee meetings.

Finance:

All sums collected by the Group shall be handed to the Treasurer who shall pay the same into an account in the name of the Group at such bank or building society as the Committee may from time to time decide. All cheques must be signed by two members of the Committee of whom one must be the Treasurer

Annual General Meeting

An AGM shall be held annually. Any item for the agenda shall be sent to the Secretary for consideration at least four weeks prior to the AGM date.

Election & Retirement of Committee Members

All officers and Committee may offer themselves annually for re-election at the AGM. If more than one nomination for an Officer is received then a vote must take place. In the event of a tie the Chairman has the casting vote.

Report and Account

The Committee shall present at each Annual General Meeting a report of the activities of the Group and its own proceedings during the previous year, with a statement of accounts up to the end of its financial year.

Dissolution:

If upon winding up or dissolution there remains, after the satisfaction of all its debts and liabilities, any property whatsoever, the same shall be given or transferred to the Practice or the parent charity or other similar charity.

Notice and Application of Rules: Any member of the Group shall upon request be supplied with a copy of these rules.

Alteration to the Rules: Any of these rules may be rescinded, amended or waived by a resolution passed at an AGM or a Special Meeting of which proper notice will have been given to all members, by a two thirds majority of the members present and voting. Provided that no alteration shall be made which would cause the Group to cease being affiliated to N.A.P.P. Reg. Charity No 222992157.

What We Do Now

From the beginning, we have held monthly meetings which are open to any patient to attend although there has always been a nucleus group of “committee members” who attend regularly and carry out the administrative duties involved in running the group.

These meetings are also attended by a Clinician, the Managing Partner and staff members, demonstrating it is truly is a liaison group.

We have Strategic Objectives which underpin our annual action plans. These are currently being reviewed by the committee with a view to revising them following a workshop in March this year. These were addressed at the November 2010 meeting. The 2011 AGM took place on 11th May.

We hold an Annual Open Meeting at which we report on the previous year’s activities, seek patient views on revised objectives and ideas for the coming year and usually invite a guest speaker alongside clinical representatives from the surgery. These have included amongst others our local MPs, both Sadiq Khan and his predecessor Tom Cox, Melba Wilson, a former Chair of Wandsworth Primary Care Trust and James Cousins, a former Chair of Wandsworth Overview and Scrutiny Committee who in 2005 presented the Royal College of General Practitioners Quality Award to the Practice. Our most recent Annual Meeting occurred in May 2010.

In recent years, we have taken an active part in a variety of NHS consultations that were held both local to Wandsworth as well as national and pan London. Examples include The pre consultation Let’s talk Health in South Wandsworth, the Battersea and North Wandsworth consultation,The Removal of Services from Bolingbroke Hospital, the full South Wandsworth consultation, and Healthcare for London (the Darzi Report Consulting the Capital). In all cases we arranged for representatives from the PCT or St George’s Hospital to make their cases to us at meetings at the surgery.

We have held two to three educational talks a year usually given by Practice Clinicians or Nurses on a wide range of health topics suggested by patients at the Annual Meetings ranging from, for example, complementary therapies to Breast Cancer, Men’s Health to Sensory Deprivation.

We have published 2/3 newsletters per annum covering matters local to the surgery as well as providing coverage of NHS and PCT issues pertinent to us as patients. The content, editing and distribution is undertaken entirely by members of the group.

Funding

A huge challenge from the start was the funding of our activities. We were launched with £1,000 from the Practice. In subsequent years we obtained grants from the Primary Care Group and its successor the Primary Care Trust, and the Community Empowerment Network. This required considerable effort on our part and we held a workshop in 2006 to share our experience with other recently established patient groups. This led to our successfully fronting an application on the part of four groups to the PCT Charitable Trust Fund.

There is now uncertainty for further funding and this may prove to be our next major challenge.

Education Talks

From time to time at one of our BPSPLG Meetings, we have our GP’s or guest speakers hold educational talks about a variety of health topics that may be of general interest.

Please click on the following links if you would like to learn more about these talks.

History

Balham Park Surgery Patient Liaison Group

Our patient group was initiated in February 2000 but its origins lay in four earlier meetings organised by Natalie Whyte, the Managing Partner, who recognised the value of patient involvement. It was always her intention that any group should be patient led and following the formation of an ad-hoc committee in September 1999, a more formal organisation was set up.

The fundamental aims were

  • To provide an information service which would give patients better access to the services they need and
  • To increase patient involvement and interest in working collaboratively to improve primary healthcare and good health.

From the start, it was the intention to communicate with and involve as many patients as possible. BPSPLG’s membership is now “opt in” for new patients under GDPR Guidelines. We currently have 6000+ members most of whom receive the regular BPSPLG newsletters and notifications of special events by email with the rest by normal post. Newsletters are also distributed via the surgery and can be read on this site.

The BPSPLG Notice board prominently positioned in the waiting area in the surgery displays the committee contact list and current notices. Anyone wanting to get in touch with BPSPLG can leave a note for the committee at Reception-we have our own mailbox which is checked regularly.

Notable Achievements

Notable achievements include the 2002 Royal College of General Practitioners Patient Participation Award which enabled us to equip and run yoga classes for patients referred by clinicians. These proved so popular that the classes have continued to the present. Class members now contribute to the cost and classes have expanded to two a week.

Another notable success related to the defence of the early morning and late night surgeries of the Practice in 2005.  The Primary Care Trust attempted to remove the funding for that service and the successful outcome of our campaign to preserve it went to the heart of what the Liaison Group could achieve on behalf of all patients. It involved taking the matter amongst others to the Wandsworth Overview and Scrutiny Committee as well as involving local media and BBC London radio and TV.

We also organised and hosted back in 2003 a Patient Participation outreach seminar, with the Primary Care Trust’s backing, for patients and staff from other practices, to share our early experiences of setting up BPSPLG.

More recently the Patient Group worked with the Managing Partner when the Ultrasound Clinic held at the Surgery was withdrawn at short notice. The Patient Group approached the Wandsworth CCG to draw attention to the importance of the service to our patients and more widely to the local community. Succeeding in getting the service reinstated under a new provider with minimum delay.