Angered by what he sees as pressure on smaller GP practices to federate or even merge with other practices, Dr Gabriel Hendow, who runs a single-handed practice in Hull, decided to test his own patients’ views.
He surveyed 200 patients, 8% of his practice list, and found that 86% of them thought they would receive better care from a small practice than they would from a large one; only 7% would like to see their practice join a larger one; and just 5% thought that healthcare should be delivered by larger practices only.
‘People always talk about how healthcare can be delivered better by larger practices, and how this is the future, but has anyone carried out any research, and have they asked patients?,’ said Dr Hendow.
‘I carried out this audit really for my own satisfaction, but also because I’m not aware of any research that’s been done in this area.
‘Now when I am at a meeting and someone says this is what should be done, I can at least produce my own audit.’