June 14, 2022 1.14 pm This story is over 24 months old

Evening and weekend GP access to be extended in Lincolnshire

From October 2022

Evening and weekend access to GP practices in Lincolnshire will be extended from October so that more appointments can be offered outside of normal working hours.

Patients have been able to book routine primary medical appointments outside of normal opening hours (Monday to Friday 8am-6.30pm) with a GP, practice nurse, or other health professional for a number of years. This has been done either through a local GP access ‘hub’, their own practice, or one nearby, and is referred to as Extended Hours and Extended Access.

From October 1, 2022, access at evenings and weekends will be combined to a single model of Enhanced Access. This will be available 6.30pm-8pm Monday to Friday and during 9am-5pm on a Saturday across the county.

The new Enhanced Access changes will mean that patients will be able to make pre-bookable and same-day GP service appointments with a range of clinical professionals.

This may be delivered at a different location to your own practice, or at a hub in the Primary Care Networks (PCN) geographical footprint, and may also be over the phone or online if appropriate.

The NHS in Lincolnshire is currently working on the best way to develop and improve access to local GP services. Some of this work includes the best way patients can be offered General Practice appointments outside of normal working hours (8am-6.30pm on week days).

The contract states that these appointments should be delivered Monday to Friday (6.30pm-8pm) and on Saturdays (9am-5pm). However, a proportion of these extra appointments could also be provided outside of this times, where it can be evidenced by the PCN that different appointment times would better meet the needs of its patient population.

GP practices are now gathering feedback from patients regarding access to primary medical services.

Each Primary Care Network (PCN) will provide surveys to patients over the coming weeks. The patients will be encouraged to respond via the link on their GP practice website, or speak to a member of the surgery team, once the survey is available.

Alongside practice data, the feedback from the surveys will be used to help shape your local practice and PCN plans on delivering these extra appointments.