Treating staff with respect

We are here to help you; thank you for treating our staff with respect

GP surgeries across Gloucestershire are asking patients to be kind and understanding to our staff as our practice teams do their best to meet exceptional levels of need.

Many of our staff have been on the receiving end of verbal, and sometimes physical aggression, from a small number of patients.

A recent survey of local GP surgeries showed that staff in all 43 practices that responded had experienced verbal abuse, with 17 of these practices estimating that they had experienced more than 51 instances in the last 12 months.

Online abuse via email and social media also is also a regular occurrence, and sadly receptionists are often on the receiving end of both verbal, and occasionally physical, abuse.

We understand that patients want to be seen as quickly as possible when they are feeling unwell, and we also understand the frustration and worry of having to wait for an appointment.

We would like to thank the vast majority of our patients for their patience when phone lines are busy, or they have to wait to speak to a member of the practice team.

We are all working hard and doing our absolute best for patients, our families and communities, and we deserve to work without fear.

Even a small number of abusive episodes can have a significant impact on morale within our teams, causing anxiety, worries and distress.

It’s also one of the reasons why some staff in GP practices in the county have resigned and it makes recruiting new members of staff more difficult.

This in turn makes it more challenging for our teams to provide the service we would like to.

We strive to always treat patients with kindness and respect, and all we ask for is the same consideration in return.

We and our families are patients too; small acts of kindness, such as a simple ‘thank you’ can have a positive impact and help staff to feel valued.

Thank you for your support.