Steve Hugh Award
Mark Holder Social Impact Declaration
Shropshire Doctors’ Co-operative Ltd
Shropdoc provides urgent medical services for patients when their GP surgery is closed and whose needs cannot safely wait until the surgery is next open. We currently have over 300 GP members, all of whom work in local general practice. We do not use agency doctors. We are a local employer of over 200 staff including nurses, drivers, call handlers and receptionists.
The Social Enterprise Mark criteria includes a requirement for all applicants and renewing Mark Holders to provide ‘social impact statements’, which illustrate how they are striving to meet their social/environmental objectives. Below are examples of how Shropdoc is Making a Mark, striving to create a positive impact on people and planet.
Social inputs – providing remote GP support
Patients calling Shropdoc for advice about visible conditions such as rashes have been offered the facility to send in ‘selfies’ of the condition through a pilot scheme which gives patients and concerned parents and carers the convenience of access to expert clinical diagnosis without having to leave home.
We also began providing remote GP support for clinical consultations conducted by Urgent Care Practitioners this year using the NHS One video system. Where appropriate a GP can be brought into the consultation live on screen to participate in the discussion just as though they were in the room. The live audio which allows the GP to speak to the patient and hear their responses has recently been supplemented by an electronic stethoscope facility which allows the UCP to record chest sounds for the GP’s to assess.
Social outputs – measures of support provided
This pilot facility has been utilised by patients on over 1,500 occasions and has undoubtedly saved a great deal of inconvenience and time for patients while still providing reassurance and the best possible clinical care. We provide services to 600,000 patients in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin and Powys. We deal with over 200,000 calls and over 50,000 patients per year. Instead of having to travel potentially a great distance the patient simply attends their local clinic where they are examined by a highly qualified urgent care practitioner in their familiar surgery.
Social outcomes – supporting local communities
These facilities provide expert clinical advice directly into the communities which are most affected by GP shortages. The ‘selfie’ service has evolved further to be useful for soft tissue diagnosis such as cellulitis, wound/minor injury management and lumps/bumps. The telemedicine link has also evolved and we have used the link for involved training and supervisor support for clinicians in training. We are currently running two surgeries per week offering telemedicine GP surgery service.
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Social Impact Declaration – Shropdoc