Data from Black Country and West Birmingham CCG shows rise in GP appointments

Black Country and West Birmingham Clinical Commissioning Group (BCBW CCG) has revealed that ‘over 34,000’ more GP appointments were held in December 2021 than December 2019.  

According to the CCG, the latest figures for GP access show 592,866 appointments took place in December 2021, which has increased from 558,382 appointments that took place in December 2019.  

Of the December appointments, 61% were face to face and 48% took place on the same day as they were requested, which has risen by 44% since 2019, the CCG says.  

Within the Black Country and West Birmingham statement, the group also highlights that the ‘vital’ role of the teams working alongside GPs was clear in the statistics – in which 247,406 of all December appointments were held with other healthcare professionals such as advanced nurse practitioners, practice nurses and pharmacists.  

Sarb Basi, Director of Primary Care, BCWB CCG, said of the new information: “Recent data shows that the total number of appointments delivered by GPs in December remains higher than pre-pandemic levels. This is extremely encouraging, especially alongside the increased demands that general practice continues to face, whilst also delivering almost half (44%) of the 2.5million local doses of COVID-19 vaccinations. 

“Our teams are working extremely hard to ensure people get the appropriate care they need and in the way they want, and whilst it’s good to see the number of face-to-face appointments increasing, it is important to note that some people also find telephone appointments very convenient too. 

“Many GP practices have a range of health professionals and trained clinicians available who can also diagnose and treat health conditions too. This ensures patients see the right person at the right time more quickly and ensures GPs can spend more time with patients with the greatest needs.” 

In other GP-related news, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) has found that ethnic minority-led GP practices are “not operating on level playing field.