PPG Meeting Minutes

Minutes of Online Meeting Held Tuesday 2 March 2021 at 18.30


  • David Usher (DU) – Chairman
  • Lois Cavallero (LC) – General Manager (AMP)
  • Brenda Bryant (BB) – Secretary to PPG
  • Dr A Naky (AN) – GP
  • Sian Webb (SW) – Site Manager – St Stephen’s Health Centre (SSHC)
  • Liz Lockwood – Social Prescriber
  • Cyrus Keeka (CK) – APPG representative
  • 10 PPG members


David Usher welcomed everyone to the meeting of the PPG.

Minutes of Meeting 1 December 2020:

Minutes agreed.

Matters Arising from Minutes of 1 December 2020:

The issue regarding the website is on-going.

Ashford Health and Well Being Up-date:

CK apologised on behalf of Paulyn Charlton who is still experiencing technical problems.

He advised that at the last meeting of 27 January 2021 an update of East Kent Hospital work being undertaken on guidance for public to comment raised concerns regarding travel distance which generated more questions than answers.

Sellindge Surgery construction is on-going but no finish date is yet available.

Ashford Borough Council getting 3 i-pads to hand out to communication venues to allow people to go on-line.

Chris Morley is interested in EPS updates on digital patient records. Dr AN advised there is a requirement for patients to opt out of the programme. This is activated in system software. SW advised CK there is a meeting with Partners to discuss further.

The Ashford Health and Well Being meeting scheduled for 3 March has been cancelled and rescheduled for 17 March 2021.

The Chairman thanked Cyrus for his update.

Presentation by Liz Lockwood – Social Prescriber

The Chairman welcomed Liz to the meeting

Liz advised that the social prescribing link worker role has emerged over the past few years and has mainly been pioneered by voluntary sector organisations, working in partnership with GP practices and other referral agencies. Link workers are employed in non-clinical roles. They are recruited for their listening skills, empathy and ability to support people.

Social prescribing link workers help to reduce health inequalities by supporting people to unpick complex issues affecting their wellbeing. They enable people to have more control over their lives, develop skills and give their time to others, through involvement in community groups.

On average, link workers have between 6-12 contacts with a person, depending on their needs, over a three-month period. They connect people to community groups and help the person to develop skills, friendships and resilience. The term ‘social prescribing link worker’ is used generically. However, locally there are many different names used to describe the link worker role. AMP has chosen to call ours a Community Link Worker.

The Chairman thanked LL for her presentation which will benefit patients.

The following questions were put to LL:

  • Q. Is this service is just for adults?

A. Yes.

  • Q. How do you identify people, is it priority or recommended by the Clinician?

A. Any-one can refer; Team can highlight patients; patients can self-refer; look at carer’s register; look at Covid recovery.

  • Q. How many in your caseload?

A. Have only been in-situ for 4 months but the process is:

  1. Take referral
  2. Make connection with patient
  3. Finding organisation to refer patient
  4. On-going work in progress.

LL advised she covers all 3 surgeries. Welfare checks are undertaken for elderly patients and vulnerable patients are highlighted to LL to check on them.

A member advised LL that she had contact with organisations that may be useful to her and LL said she would be in touch. LL advised her email address is: [email protected] and that she was happy for patients to contact her if they wished to refer.

Ashford Medical Partnership (AMP) Update:

SW advised that as at 2 March 2021 the total number of Covid vaccinations administered was 5,583.

Cohorts 1, 2, 3 and 4 have been blitzed but the NHS has sent out over 1m additional shielding letters. These patients have been identified and are being booked into the Monday 8 March clinic.

Cohort 5 patients are being invited to attend Folkestone and Canterbury sites for their vaccinations.

We have identified 3,500 patients in Cohort 6 and so far have vaccinated over half.

SW advised that AMP is making good progress on all Cohorts but are experiencing delivery issues of the vaccines.

Both Singleton and Willesborough surgeries are supporting St Stephen’s to deliver the vaccinations together with a number of volunteers who have assisted in this process.

CK offered his congratulations to everyone involved in the vaccination process, he said the process went very smoothly and was very well organised. Other members’ also added their appreciation of the smooth organisation and process.

One member said they assumed that as they were a patient they would get their vaccine at the surgery but was booked in at Folkestone. SW advised that vaccination centres were introduced in Cohort 4 and Cohort 5 were invited to attend these centres. She advised patients to attend these vaccination sites if able as delivery of vaccines to surgeries had slowed.

The comment was made that a patient had the injection but since had been contacted 7 times to book his vaccination but nevertheless was very happy with the process. LC advised she would feed back to the team in this regard.

The Chairman advised that a question had been raised regarding reminders for annual blood tests and medication reviews. SW advised that a recall system is being put in place. Patients can contact the surgery if needed. The Medicine Management Team is now flagging up medicine related reminders and GP’s on clinical need.

Dr AN advised that the guidelines regarding routine tests had changed and that all such tests had been suspended following recommendations made by the Royal College of GP’s to enable GP’s to devote their time to urgent cases and Covid. This instruction is currently valid until 31 March 2021. However, Smears, Child Immunisations and Cancer treatment were to continue.

Clinics have had to be cancelled to accommodate Covid vaccinations due to the timeframe for administering them. This will have an impact on patients and cause a backlog.

The question was asked regarding the flu vaccination uptake. SW advised that unfortunately the take up was not a high as expected with 4,800 patients being given the flu vaccination.

Any Other Business:

The Chairman tabled a question received from a member in regard to the call waiting music being played and asked if it could be changed. LC advised there were very few options available on the call system and the current tune is the lesser of all evils and the best one available at this time. If the options change then hopefully so will the call waiting music.

CK mentioned that £500 left over from fund raising is currently being held by a member of the fund raising committee and wanted to know what to do with it. The Chairman advised that prior to Covid, AMP were looking into setting up a separate bank account for the PPG but this is currently on hold with no fund raising being made over the past year. LC advised that she will ask the Lead Nurse, Aine, to liaise regarding this money.

CK asked what is happening regarding Vitamin D being given to shielding patients. Dr AN advised that these patients will be identified by the NHS not the surgery and patients have to apply on-line for this supplement. He also advised that Vitamin D shouldn’t affect other medication but also that one should be careful about taking supplements.

DU thanked SW and LL for their presentations and Dr AN for his input.

Date of Next Meeting:

Tuesday 1 June 2021 (on-line).