Around 2.3 million people, aged 16 and over, who are registered with a GP practice in England will receive an invitation to take part in Europe’s biggest patient experience survey in early January. As GP practices have had to make a number of changes over the last 12 months in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever that we hear about experiences of using local GP and health services.
The invitations go out by letter to a sample of people from each of more than 6800 practices. Following a successful pilot, text message reminders are also being sent to the whole sample (where a mobile number is recorded) alongside paper questionnaires.
The data provides vital information to the NHS to identify what’s working well and what can be improved. It helps identify inequalities in experience too, such as for certain age or ethnic groups or people with other protected characteristics. It can also provide new information that does not come to light in other ways. Last year’s survey helped the NHS to learn more about the high proportion of people who have caring responsibilities and about how this affects their experiences of using health services.