PPG: Meeting Minutes 9th May 2023






  • David Blount - Chair
  • Cameron Cater - Westbank
  • Alex Cook - Westbank
  • Arthur Laxton
  • Christine Walter - Secretary
  • Faith Wood
  • Val Stanley
  • Jan Caig


  • Andrew Cadbury - Co Chair
  • Shirley Beer
  • Valerie Santer


David welcomed all present.



  • Received from Andrew, Shirley and Valerie
  • Lynn Ferber has resigned from the group due to family commitments

Minutes of March 2023 and AGM 2023 meetings

The Minutes of both meeting were approved.


Matters arising from the Minutes

Virtual Members cessation

Virtual Members have been removed from the agenda. David had written to each of them stating the intention for removal. There had been no response from anyone. It was also noted that none had attended the AGM.

Practice Noticeboards and Website:

There was some empty space on the noticeboards. Amanda has an ongoing action to provide material when suitable/available.

PPG Participation in CQC Reports:

Alex reported that there had been no in person CQC visit since before COVID but there had been one phone contact at the beginning of COVID. No visits are currently planned, decision for a visit lies with CQC. It was felt appropriate to provide CQC with feedback on the positive comments received from patients, feedback from the Open Evening and role of the PPG.

  • David and Val to draft letter to CQC
  • Alex to provide CQC contact point/addressee

Practice Updates

In process of recruiting for 2 positions on reception - x1 receptionist 25-30hrs p/w and x1 apprentice receptionist, full-time including one day a week at Exeter College.

The Practice has capacity to take on new patients if they live within the catchment area.

A new phone system is planned for installation after contract for existing system ends in December 2023. The new system will allow callers to be handled more efficiently through self-selecting options and speed up call waiting queues. The system was being funded by the Practice.

Alex advised that contact for PPG business was best done via the existing email contacts.

Changes to GP contracts: all patients are now being triaged on their first contact and not being asked to call back. By 31/10/2023 all patients will have full online access to their electronic records (from 2014). There was concern that this will stimulate a significant increase in questions to the doctors.

Cam shared the results of a recent NHS GP-Patient survey which showed comparison with Ide Lane and Topsham. Westbank achieved the most positive results. Additionally, Westbank’s results were well above the national score.

Val suggested that results should be part of feedback to CQC (see 4 above) along with the suggestion that the question(s) relating to ‘chosen GP’ should instead refer to ‘appropriate health professional’. Arthur gave feedback from 3 people who had been unable to make an appointment with a GP on their way out after being told to do so by a health professional they had just seen. Alex confirmed that the appointments should have been booked.

Alex to follow up.

DNAs: There were 391 Jan-Mar 2023. The need is to find out why people DNA and what would help them keep appointments or notify to cancel. Cam to provide data/information for basis of discussion at the next meeting.


News from Westbank HLC

No report available this month.


Finalise Matters for forthcoming Open Evening

Val felt the Open Evening had been successful despite there being only 8-9 attendees (out of 9k patients) who were not linked to the PPG or the practice. Therefore there was a need to communicate more effectively. Opportunities for face to face opportunities with existing groups and electronic media needed to be explored. Communication via parish magazines had its place but likely did not reach a younger demographic. Subject to be an agenda item at the next meeting.

  • Cam to obtain feedback from individuals from the Practice if attendance had been worth their time.

Key items that Practice wish PPG to support:

Alex felt there was nothing in particular at the moment that the Practice needed PPG support on. Jan felt that we should have feedback from the Practice on the value of the PPG. It was noted that it was a GP contract requirement to have a PPG.


PPG Updates in Local Newsletters

Cam reported that the editors of Scene (Exminster) had asked for the Practice/PPG contribution to be edited down to 500 words. This proved to be very restrictive on the messages the Practice and PPG wished to communicate. A discussion followed that highlighted the need to gain better understanding and clarity of the parameters for submission of material to the parish magazines. Faith suggested that Jenny Luscombe, Manager of Scene, be contacted. The discussion also highlighted again the need for the PPG to consider having its own online presence.

Unfortunately there was no one within the PPG who had the skills to develop such a presence. Val suggested that it could perhaps be a project for a college student. Linked with 8 above


Discuss meeting with members of the other PPG groups within circuit (Exeter Outer Area):

David had written to the other PPG groups. Pinhoe PPG had replied but seemed to misunderstand the content of David’s letter. No other replies had been received. Cam to send follow-up/chaser email. To be discussed further at the next meeting.



No items to record.


Next Meeting Date

  • Tuesday June 13th 2023 2pm
  • Westbank HL&LC (AGM)