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Support increasing demand and provide easier access Posted on 14 Sep 2021

NHS Ayrshire & Arran

Further measures have been put in place to support increasing demand and provide easier access for patients when calling their GP Practice.

As positive COVID-19 cases within our communities significantly rise, NHS Ayrshire & Arran has had to review how some planned and out-patient services are provided. This significant pressure is also being experienced across Primary Care services, particularly with GP Practices trying to manage the ever increasing demand.

The knock on effect of the pandemic, and reduction in other services, means people are turning more to their GP practices. In some instances this has gone from 150 calls a day before the pandemic to now in excess of 500 a day. Practice staff are doing their very best to answer all these calls but on occasions this isn’t possible. This is very frustrating for patients as well as our GP practice staff.

Practice staff are prioritising those in most need for urgent appointments. The flexible mix of telephone, video and in-person consulting is essential to deal with the numerous requests being received with the workforce available. If during the video or telephone consultation the Clinician feels an in-person examination is needed then this will be offered.

Given the significant demand, the Ayrshire Urgent Care Service is working in partnership with GP practices to help patients get the right care in the right place at the right time. During high periods of demand, patients phoning their GP practice may now have their call re-directed to a central call handling service at the Ayrshire Urgent Care Service for advice and support. Patients should be assured that if they require the assistance of their own GP Practice this will be arranged.

If you need to contact your GP Practice, please continue to call the number you would normally use.

Local Services. Ready to Help You Maureen Leggat