Ashwell Patients Group - from our new practice manager Katie Prince

Dear Patients of Ashwell and Bassingbourn Surgery,

I thought it might be nice to introduce myself, as your new Surgery Practice Manager.

I am very excited to join Ashwell Surgery, especially at this pivotal time, as we emerge from the tight restrictions, the Covid-19 Pandemic imposed on Primary care. The Surgery is very much looking forward to the easing of such restrictions and is desperate to return to some kind normality, whatever that “new normal,” might look like.

Almost overnight, the Pandemic turned General Practice on its head. Everything that we knew, how we behaved, how we saw patients, how patients saw us, how the entire business operated had to change immediately in response to the pandemic. Throughout the Pandemic, Surgeries have continued to see and care for their patients, often in ways that have seemed alien to patients (and often the Doctors too)! There has been anxiety and fear, on both sides; not only regarding the virus but being responsible for striking an acceptable balance between seeing patients face to face, over increasing the risk of virus transmission.

Across the NHS, new ways of working were introduced, to aid both triage and access for patients. There was a push for online consultations and telephony options to support diagnosis and sometimes eliminate the need for an in-person consultation. These changes saw benefits such as, an increase in the numbers of patients that could been seen and improved efficiency because often patients were directed to the right service, the first time. However, there have been drawbacks of having to limit face to face consultations, which has undoubtedly caused delays in care and frustration to both sides. I am eager to continue to develop the benefits of new ways of working but equally keen to understand and address patient frustrations.

I have worked in General Practice since 2012. I joined Ashwell Surgery in June 2021, working one day per week initially, until my official full time start date on 6th September.I hold qualifications in HR, Leadership and Management and in Primary Health Care Management.

I am passionate about promoting safety and sustainability within General Practice. I hope to achieve a safe and caring environment for both clinicians and patients of the Surgery. I am very much looking forward to meeting you all and engaging with you on what our, “new normal,” might look like.

Practice Manager Katie Prince

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