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At the heart of general practice since 1960

Patients happy with GP clinical care

Patients are highly satisfied with the care they receive from their GP, the latest NHS

patient survey data confirm.

In stark contrast to widespread complaints over access, 95 per cent of patients questioned in 2002 said GPs treated them with courtesy and respect all or most of the time ­ the same proportion as in 1998. An overwhelming majority also had confidence in their GP's clinical ability.

Eighty-three per cent felt their doctor knew enough about their condition or treatment, and where a GP took action, 95 per cent thought it appropriate. Ninety-one per cent said the first diagnosis was right ­ a level unchanged from 1998.

But 17 per cent believed their GP did not know enough about their medical history ­ slightly up from 1998.

Some 86 per cent felt the length of consultation was appropriate, down only 1 per cent from 1998.

Thirteen per cent said they had felt like making a complaint against a GP or other surgery member, but only 1 per cent actually made one.

Responses to out-of-hours care were more negative, with only 73 per cent saying they got the 'right' treatment ­ down from 77 per cent in 1998. There was an increase in the number who thought it was more difficult to persuade a GP to do a home visit.

Satisfaction with GPs: NHS Patient Survey results

 · 95 per cent felt the treatment they received from their GP was appropriate

 · 13 per cent felt like making a complaint against a GP or member of practice staff but only 1 per cent did so

 · 86 per cent said the length of their GP consultation was appropriate

 · 95 per cent said their GP treated them with courtesy and respect

 · 20 per cent said it was difficult to persuade their GP to make a home visit

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