Suffolk tech firm X-on is growing rapidly thanks to its ground-breaking telephone service for doctors and patients.

Paul Bensley, manager director of X-on developed the cloud-based system Surgery Connect which is designed to be easier for patients to use when contacting their doctors surgeries, as well as being more efficient for GP practices.

The system is now being used by hundreds of family doctors.

Patients are able to cancel or re-arrange appointments on their phones.

Mr Bensley said: "GP surgeries are faced with ever-increasing demand, and it is pleasing to see our technology recognised for how it is helping.

"The system helps GP surgeries use modern, adaptable communication tools that can help them manage demand, and deliver a better patient experience

"It is developing very rapidly. It is exhausting and exciting at the same time.

"We saw the opportunity to develop a product for the surgery market about five years ago.

"We were aware of the problems on a national scale of the difficulty of people contacting doctors and the high numbers of missed appointments.

"It was a commercial opportunity."

Some surgeries are trailing using video with the same phone handset, providing new ways of contacting the surgery and health professionals.

Mr Bensley launched X-on in 2000, moving to Framlingham Technology Centre in 2003.

From just two people at the beginning, X-on has grown to employ 46 today, with an increase of 10 staff over the past year.

"We are continuing to grow along with the Surgery Connect system. We are employing more people and will probably be taken on another 10 this year,

Turnover has also grown to £6.3m in the current year compared with £5.3m last year.

"I am primarily a technologist but I don't get to do so much of that as I would like, I am always out there talking about the project."

The system had great potential to be introduced across the full range of the patient-facing health care services, he said,

It could be used for video conferencing too.

"It can deliver a better service for patients and greater efficiency for the NHS," he added.