23rd October 2019
Changes to the Surgery Computer System – November to January 2019/20
As some of you will be aware from visits to the surgery in recent months, we have been suffering with a slow computer system which at times, has made operating normally almost impossible. This is because our current clinical system just can’t cope with the increasing demands changes in procedures and more and more varied interactions and services place upon it. As a practice, we are not alone; most practices locally are having similar difficulties.
In view of this, the Clinical Commissioning Group (Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley CCG) have decided to move every practice to a different clinical system, which does not have these issues. The change will be staged across the whole patch and will be complete by the summer of next year.
The practice has now been given its’ date of change, 23rd January 2020. But there will be significant work to be completed both sides of that date and this letter is designed to provide you with some brief details so that you understand why there will be some disruption to our service from now until the middle of February.
So – whilst we only have sketchy details at this stage, we do know the following:
5th November – the practice will be without computers from about 0930, so any appointments scheduled after that time will have to be moved to another day. It is not known how long we will be off, so the practice will work on an emergencies only basis on paper and write up the notes retrospectively.
8th November through until go live on 23rd January – all clinicians and administrative staff will have to be trained on the new system whilst still carrying out their normal duties. This will mean us having to run short of staff on reception etc. on some days, whilst other staffs are trained. The phone may not get answered as quickly and you may have to wait a few minutes longer in reception (please use the self-check in if possible) so please bear with us.
On the 23rd January, the system will switch over. It is expected we will run on a similar basis to 5th November, but will update this letter nearer the time once further details are known.
It is believed that we will be unable to book any appointments ahead of go live date, so our normal rules of being able to book 4 weeks ahead will not apply. The last pre bookable appointments will be on 22nd January. We will open the books again for advance booking as soon as possible after go live.
24th January onwards – staff will be getting used to using the new system, which will inevitably mean they are slower whilst they get to grips with it. Again, please bear with us whilst we gain experience and build confidence.
Patient On Line access will be suspended from 22nd January. After go live, every patient who is currently signed up, will be sent a new activation code for the new system. There are several thousand for us to work through, so it may take several weeks before we can get everyone back on the system, please be patient.
Please accept our apologies for any disruption during this time, please bear with us and understand that we will do everything we can to make the transition as smooth as possible.