Scilly’s Health Centre Is One Of The Best In The Country
Scilly’s Health Centre has been rated as ‘outstanding’ following a Care Quality Commission inspection in April.
The report found that the St Mary’s-based GP surgery provides excellent care to the full range of patients they see – from the elderly and families through to working people, youngsters and visitors.
The inspectors said the leadership was good and staff were well trained and able to flag up any potential issues to the senior management team.
They praised innovative approaches at the centre, such as on-site blood testing and ultrasound screening, which had significantly reduced the need for island residents to travel to the mainland for treatment.
The report said the practice also handled patient confidentiality well, especially important in such a close knit community.
The Health Centre has set up a dedicated phone line for young people to make appointments or discuss health issues and staff handle their medical notes separately.
And sexual health clinics don’t take place at set times, to avoid embarrassment for patients.
Scilly’s GP’s are routinely exceeding the national average for diagnosing conditions such as dementia in the elderly and foot ulcers in people with diabetes.
The report said that setting up regular clinics on the off-islands meant elderly patients or people with long term conditions didn’t have to worry about getting to St Mary’s, particularly during the winter months.
And at a time when there’s a national debate about extending GP’s working hours, the practice was commended for improving access for working people by opening on Saturdays.
The inspectors also spoke to patients, who told them they could always get an appointment when they needed one and that the staff were friendly and treated them with respect.
Lead GP Dr John Garman told Radio Scilly that he’s delighted that the hard work of the last few years has paid off and been recognised by the CQC.
John said: “I really cannot praise the team that we have at the Health Centre enough for all their efforts, as everyone has put their all into the improvements that we have made. It’s also great to see that this report recognises some of the wider efforts around integration of services on Scilly that are underway.
“Credit needs to go to NHS Kernow, the Council and other provider organisations, such as Peninsula Community Health and the Ambulance Service for their role in that.”
Out of 129 GP surgeries visited in the latest round of inspections by the CQC, Scilly’s Health Centre was one of only 3 to be awarded the ‘outstanding’ rating.