Woolpit: Health practice becomes only second in East Anglia to win national recognition

The partners and practice manager of Woolpit Health Centre with the award certificate. From L-R: Dr

The partners and practice manager of Woolpit Health Centre with the award certificate. From L-R: Dr Sonny Aung, Dr Richard West MBE, Dr Ben Spriggs, Mrs Sallie Crouch, Dr Clare Davies, Dr Ben McCann, Dr Alastair McColl - Credit: Archant

A health practice in west Suffolk has become one of only two in East Anglia to be nationally recognised for its excellent patient care.

The Royal College of General Practitioners’ (RCGP) GP Practice Accreditation has been awarded to Woolpit Health Centre, near Bury St Edmunds, for its delivery of patient-focused care.

Every staff member has helped with aspects including the planning of services to address health inequalities, ensuring effective communications between patients and staff, speeding up the process for referrals and remodelling the waiting room area including a new information screen and better signage.

Dr Ben Spriggs, a GP at Woolpit Health Centre who was leading on the GP Practice Accreditation, said: “This national recognition highlights the commitment of every staff member in ensuring our patients receive the very best level of care.

“In order to achieve the accreditation we worked with our patients, staff and the RCGP to identify what areas worked well and what areas we could improve upon. The feedback we received enabled us to make the changes we needed so that patients receive an unparalleled level of safe, quality care. I am very proud of this achievement.”

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The GP Practice Accreditation is awarded to surgeries which meet 78 different quality standards, all of which demonstrate a commitment to safe, quality services for patients.

Only 19 GP practices in the country have been awarded the accreditation, including only one other surgery in East Anglia.

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Health ministers Dr Dan Poulter said: “This is an outstanding achievement by everyone at Woolpit Health Centre and I feel privileged to have been invited to present this award.

“We know that quality, locally delivered healthcare services are vital to improving health and well-being and this health centre is an integral part of the Woolpit community.

“This recognition demonstrates how hard the staff have worked to meet the rigorous standards of this accreditation and patients will undoubtedly benefit from further improved healthcare services.”

Dr Maureen Baker, chairwoman of the RCGP, added: “GPs and practice teams across the UK are struggling to balance ever-increasing workloads with diminishing resources, so it is outstanding that we continue to witness practices striving to improve the quality of care that they provide to their patients.

“Practice Accreditation is a real achievement - congratulations to everyone at Woolpit Health Centre who was involved.

“This is a celebration of how hard the whole practice has worked on behalf of all their patients and carers.”

The award was presented during a ceremony at the practice on Friday.

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