swans on a lake

Changes To Our Telephone Call Triage Service

July 9, 2024

We want to keep you informed about an important change in the way we handle patient telephone calls at Swan Medical Group.

Up until now, when you contacted the surgery, our receptionists would take your details & add you to a call list, only asking the minimal amount of information as to why you wanted to speak with your GP.


What’s Changing?

  • Our reception team will be asking more clinical information during your call from now on.
  • This will then be reviewed by our team of trained care navigators & clinicians. Based on the information you have provided; your call will then be booked with the most appropriate clinician within a timescale appropriate to the clinical need.
  • This may still be with a GP, but it could be with one of our community pharmacists, physiotherapists, Advanced Nurse Practitioners, Practice Nurses or Healthcare Assistants.
  • If your clinical need is more URGENT, you may be referred to the Urgent Treatment Centre. Alternatively, it may be something that can be dealt with by one of our Local Pharmacies under the ‘Pharmacy First’ scheme.
  • We will let you know the outcome of this review and what will happen next.


What do I need to do?

  • Please bear in mind that the receptionists have been asked to gather more clinical information. You WILL get to speak to a receptionist to explain your need.
  • Please try to be as clear as possible with our receptionist, think about what you are asking for.
  • Where possible use NHS Online services. These requests will be triaged in the same way and can be helpful if it is a routine or administrative request.
  • Let us know what your preferred method of communication is as we can reply by text, email or by phone to these requests.


How are we dealing with the extra time needed?

  • Our telephone system now offers patients a free callback facility.
  • You retain your place in the queue without having to wait on the phone.
  • Follow the instructions to activate a callback when prompted.


Why the Change?

  • This change aligns with the NHS England ‘Modern General Practice’ guidance, something that is being rolled out nationwide.
  • It improves our, and the NHS efficiency, whilst maintaining patient-centered care.
  • It utilises the broader range of healthcare professionals working in Primary care.
  • It ensures that those that require a GP review can see their doctor (in a world where there is a limited resource).


From when?

  • In June 2024, we conducted a successful pilot of this new process, receiving positive feedback from both patients and staff so will continue to triage calls from now on.
  • We will continue to evaluate these changes to ensure we meet patient demand and adapt them as required to continue to deliver highest level of care possible.


Our goal is to provide you with the best possible care, ensuring you see the most appropriate clinician for your clinical need.  We hope these steps will enhance our service to you and through a process of triage, we can ensure that YOU receive ‘the right care from the right professional at the right time.’