PPG Minutes - October 2023




New Practice Manager - Sherry Oriola

Sherry has been appointed as the new Practice Manager.


Development of the Allerton Building

Update: Quotes for the development of the practice are still being considered. The development work will include placing a lift at the back of the premises and new consulting rooms on the first floor. The timescale for the work is currently unknown. Sherry said that much of the work will be carried out at weekends when the practice is closed.

Action: We asked for a weighing chair for patients using wheelchairs to be added to the development programme for the practice. Currently the nearest weighing chairs are at the Homerton or St Leonard’s hospitals.

Question for Sherry: Will more GPs be employed in Allerton Road Practice?

Answer: We are in the process of recruiting a GP. We will keep patients updated via PPG meetings


Air Conditioner

The air conditioners have been broken for some time and were not fixed during the pandemic. They have now been examined by NHS Property Company and found to be unfit for use.

Action: They will be replaced but timescale not known.


Neighbourhood Developments

Sherry said that the Neighbourhood are considering the development of local services which could include weekend appointments.

Action: MA to invite PCN Manager, Lucy Stewart-Amin, Wetlands/PCN manager, to next meeting to discuss developments in the Neighbourhood area. Agreed also to advertise Neighbourhood meetings more widely to Allerton patients.

PCN = primary care network – GPs in Allerton, Statham and John Scott


Ear Wax Removal Machine

Allerton has purchased this machine and is currently offering this service to patients 65 and over. We raised concerns about the decision to limit access to the machine to people one specific age group, because when the machine was purchased no specific age group was specified.

This Issue has been raised with Marie Gabriel, Chair of the NELNHS and the response is attached. Issue to be raised with Hurley, the owners of the practice. Sherry advised that the ear wax removal service is available from Specsavers.

Specsavers Earwax Removal Service


Toenail Cutting

This issue has also been raised with the North East London NHS and Marie Gabriel has replied saying that this service is not provided for by the GP contract, but trials have been carried out locally.

At the moment we are not funded across the borough to do this and charge the full cost of £30.00 plus a one-off charge for a reusable foot kit £10.50. If you need more information, please call us on 0207 739 2533.

Action: Malcolm will contact GPs/Primary Care Networks across Hackney asking them to reassess the current position and consider providing this service free at all GP surgeries. A patient’s petition will also be considered.


Choose and Book

This system can be difficult to access without a smart phone. Often the choice is of a single provider. The Allerton admin team will support patients to use the choose and book system if they need assistance.

Action: More information needs to be made available to patients to raise awareness about how to use Choose and Book.


Referrals for Safeguarding

Sherry described problems regarding referrals to the Council for Safeguarding and the lack of feedback from the Council. If there is no resolution the issue could be referred to the Health and Wellbeing Board of Hackney Council. Sherry to provide more information.


Accessing Additional Services

The Allerton website lists practitioners who are supposed to be available to provide services in our neighbourhood/PCN area, in addition to GPs, Nurses and Healthcare Assistants, but patients know very little about their work or how to access them. Practitioners not listed on the website and their working day at Allerton included.

The following practitioners do provide services to Allerton GP practice or in the local Neighbourhood area:

  • Care-Coordinator – Issaka - Wednesday
  • Clinical Pharmacists - Joseph Larka, Bharat Uppala
  • Health and Wellbeing Coach – Shqipe Humolli – Wednesday
  • Healthcare Assistant - Tabranie Said
  • Paramedic – James Miller – Which Day?
  • Phlebotomist - Titilayo Oliyide
  • Physiotherapist – Rebecca East - Wednesday
  • Practice Nurse - Binu Varghese
  • Social Prescriber – Suyur Sehriban - Wednesday
  • Wellbeing Practitioner – Amanda – Which Day?

The following practitioners, though listed on the website do not provide services to Allerton: First Contact Practitioner, Medical/GP Assistant, Mental Health Practitioner, Nursing Associate, Pharmacy Technician, Physician Associate,

Action: Produce a newsletter or leaflet for all patients advising them of these roles and how to access these services.


Sunday Appointments

Sunday appointments are not available at Allerton or in the local Neighbourhood.


Patients Know Best (PKB)

This private company is being funded by the NHS North East London at £1m/year to hold our medical data. Consent from patients for this company to hold our data has never been obtained and most patients have never heard of PKB, or how it got the right to hold our encrypted data. There has been no public discourse or patient participation in discussing this issue.

Action: PKB should be advised that patients don’t know who they are and that they need our consent to hold our confidential data. Malcolm has written to PKB to complain about them being given access to our data without out consent. There reply was as follows:

Letter From ‘Patients Know Best’,11 Oct 2023

Hi Malcolm, I'd like to reassure you that PKB is not fraud, a con or a trick. Sorry that we've made you feel this way. Homerton Hospital have posted about the service on their webpages. It may help to know that we are a certified B-corporation. This means that we have been recognised for our commitment in using our service as a force for social good. (Since 2018, we have held our title as ‘Best For The World Honouree’)

PKB is used in NHS organisations across the UK to provide patients with an online copy of their health record data. We believe all patients should have access to their health record, so they can make informed decisions about their care. We work with our NHS customers to develop digital solutions that save the hospital's money and time, as well as reducing impact to the environment.

Have you ever accessed your hospital record via the NHS app? This section of the NHS app is powered by PKB. If you clicked through to this, you would have been asked to register with PKB (and to read our privacy policy and give consent) If not, you may have registered after receiving an invitation from one of your clinical teams.

Homerton haven't passed your data to a private company, they're using a technology platform to share your own data with you via a portal system. The data is controlled and managed by your healthcare organisations and stored on secure servers. Access to a patient’s data is only authorised by the patient, the data controller or local laws.

And finally, just to reiterate that you are always in control of who can see your record. Our manual provides instruction on how to revoke sharing, if required. 

Please let me know if there's anything else I can help you with, and please do reach out to your clinicians if you need further reassurance :)

Lisa Marie Jones
Support Team Manager
Patients Know Best

Next Meeting of the PPG – Wednesday, January 17th